• Tue. Sep 21st, 2021

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Ecocide may be on its way to becoming a new international crime

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THOSE of us who write about the state of the environment are accustomed to being the bearers of bad news, and it is easy to become numbed by the scale of the destruction. But some stories retain the power to shock. One of them hit me hard a few weeks ago.

A widely reported research paper set out to discover how much of Earth’s land is ecologically intact, meaning that its ecosystem remains in a pristine, pre-industrial state. The answer: just 3 per cent. To frame it differently, in the past 500 years, humans have degraded …