A Note on the How of Achieving 30-30 and Half Earth

Stephen M. Sachs*

It is clearly very important to move to having very large portions of land around Earth free of development, and left in a natural state to the extent practical, as argued above, to keep the Earth in balance, which is for human good as well as for all other species, and to limit the spread new deadly pandemics crossing to humans from wild species.

However, it is critical that in undertaking this global conservation, that we move away from misguided and long shown to be incorrect conservation notions based on the idea that human beings are separate from nature. In several parts of the world, this unfortunate approach has led to the removal of Indigenous peoples from their homelands against their will - destroying their cultures and qualities of life in major human and Indigenous rights violations.

Moreover, this has been counterproductive of conservation as the best preservers/conservers of the land are well proven to be their Indigenous inhabitants, while many of the poorly paid guards brought in from outside the area to be conserved have often been bribed to allow poaching or illegal extractive activity in the conservation zone, or engaged in it themselves. Where Indigenous people live in an area to be conserved, arrangements must be made with them, that they agree to willingly, to have them either be the conservers or engage in real co-conservation in which they are the leading voice. All of this has been well researched and spelled out repeatedly by Survival International over 30 years (https://www.survivalinternational.org, and search "conservation").

*Stephen M. Sachs is Senior Editor of IPJ, and lead drafter and coordinating editor of Recreating the Circle: The Renewal of American Indian Self-Determination and of Honoring the Circle, Ongoing Learning from American Indians on Politics and Society.

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