Earth Day 2023: Why Saving the Planet Is Good For Our Health

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At Ecoinomy, we believe that good health is a global fundamental right and that every human being deserves access to affordable, accessible healthcare. As we approach Earth Day 2023, we’re showcasing how good human health and planetary health are intrinsically linked to one another.

One of the biggest existing threats to human health is climate change. As an innovative healthcare-tech company, we understand the importance of a healthy planet for our own well-being. The truth is, the health of our planet and the health of our bodies are intricately linked. That’s why we’re committed to finding solutions that work in harmony with nature to benefit both humans, and the planet we call home.

One of the most striking examples of the connection between planetary and human health, is the fact that a quarter of all modern-day medicine that we use in our everyday lives came from plants and other organisms that were discovered in the rainforest. The largest rainforest is the Amazon Rainforest, which is home to more than 80,000 plant species, of these, more than 40,000 play a critical role in keeping us — all of us — alive by regulating the global climate and acting as “The Lungs Of The Planet”. But with habitat loss and deforestation threatening these vital ecosystems, along with indigenous languages at risk of dying out, we could lose thousands of life-changing medicines before we even have the chance to learn about them them. 

It’s so important that we work to prevent habitat loss and protect our planet. But it’s not just about preserving biodiversity – it’s also about improving our own health. By finding the right fusion of technology and nature, we can create solutions that benefit both. 

Repopulating Rainforests To Support the Fight Against Climate Change

The crisis is a man-made problem. But luckily, we still have time to create a solution.

Roughly 64% of the world’s tropical rainforest has been destroyed or degraded since pre-industrial times, according to a new report by the Rainforest Foundation Norway (RFN). That means that only 36% of the global rainforest — from the Amazon to the Sumatra to the Congo Basin — remains fully intact.

Despite further warnings from scientists, since 2021 the world has lost over 27.4 million acres of forest in tropical regions; this is an area 1.3 times the size of Ireland. That’s 52 acres per minute. The rampant destruction of primary rainforests in particular totalled over 9.2 million acres, dumping 2.5 gigatonnes of carbon dioxide into our atmosphere. That’s equivalent to India’s annual emissions. If tropical deforestation were a country, it would be the third largest emitter of greenhouse gases after China and the United States. Yet, despite this destruction, the tropical forests that remain still remove twice this quantity of CO2 equivalents from the atmosphere each year.

Humans deforest around ten million hectares of forest every year. That’s an area the size of Portugal. Around half of this deforestation is offset by regrowing forests, so overall we lose around five million hectares each year. The global agriculture sector accounts for around 70%-90% of all global deforestation. Over half of all deforestation globally serves to clear land for crops, and almost 40% to clear land for livestock. Considering that globally, 3.1 billion people (or 1 in 10 people) can’t afford a healthy or nutritious diet highlights the vast scope of global food inequality and the need to adopt new changes in our daily habits and meat consumption, which in turn would help to prevent the high rate of deforestation. 

The good news is, that under some circumstances and in the right conditions, rainforests can recover their full plant species diversity in 25 to 65 years. Organisations and charities can also use technology to monitor and protect endangered species and their habitats, while also developing sustainable agriculture practices that protect the soil and water. 

How Ecoinomy Is Focusing On A Planet-Friendly Future

In our updated Tokenomics, we have outlined our plans to facilitate transactions on the Polygon network. Polygon is the leading Ethereum scaling platform and the facilitator of future ECM transactions. In 2022, Polygon officially became a carbon-negative company, releasing its green manifesto back in April 2022. It is eliminating all of its carbon debt that has been converged since its inception and acknowledges its responsibility in becoming a role model in the tech space for the fight against climate change. Polygon is a strong advocate for global-scale reform within the tech industry and we’re delighted to be utilising this network to facilitate all ECM token transactions in the not-so-distant future. 

In addition, part of our manifesto is to wholeheartedly support the cultivation, distribution and consumption of organic medicines, such as medical cannabis, hemp and CBD. Hemp is one of the most efficient biomass sources in the world, absorbing between 8-15 tonnes of carbon per hectare. Forests, in comparison, absorb only 2-6 tonnes per hectare, depending on the type of tree. It’s a fantastic, environmentally friendly substitute for plastic and fabric that is 100% biodegradable. Additionally, one acre of hemp thats been planted for 40 years has 400% more usable fibre than one acre of trees through the same 40-year lifecycle.

Growing cannabis indoors can result in huge consumption of energy and therefore a large carbon footprint. However, promoting outdoor growing and utilising the very best agri-tech and renewable energies to improve yields can certainly be a solution to solving the problems that the planet is facing.

What Steps Can You Take To Help?

We could lose thousands of undiscovered medicines if we don’t work to prevent habitat loss and deforestation. We understand the importance of taking care of the planet in order to take care of ourselves. 

It’s estimated that preserving and even improving the world’s biodiversity, which is vital for human health, would cost roughly $1 trillion. Yes, it sounds expensive, but it’s significantly cheaper than the cost of inaction, outlined in this article from the BNEF.

Ultimately, the decision to implement changes on a global scale comes from governing bodies and corporate giants, filtering solutions down from the top, but we can still take steps in our everyday lives to drive change, reduce our environmental impact and improve our own health. 

Write to your local MP or local government representative to ask for their support in tackling climate change – if you’re in need of some inspiration, Hope For The Future have some great templates that are readily available on their website.

Embrace sustainable transportation options such as biking and walking. Not only do these modes of transportation reduce carbon emissions and improve air quality, which we discussed earlier as important factors in human health, but they also provide physical activity that can improve our overall well-being. By choosing to bike or walk instead of driving a car, we are not only reducing our carbon footprint and contributing to a healthier planet, but we are also taking steps towards improving our own health. It’s a win-win situation that we can all benefit from.

Other simple acts such as transitioning to a more plant-based diet, using reusable bags, reducing plastic use, and conserving water can make a big difference. By making these changes, we can all contribute to a healthier planet and a healthier future.

In honour of Earth Day, which is taking place on 22nd April, we’d like to draw your attention to Cool Earth, which is a fantastic charity that has supported over 40 people-powered climate projects and has planted more than 100 million trees to date.

Join us in raising awareness of the healing properties of our rainforests and why saving them is imperative for the future of human healthcare and achieving our vision of global healthcare equity.

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