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Opinion: Everything Has to be Tackled Holistically

If we are to find sustainable solutions to climate change, we have to look at the bigger picture.

And in that picture climate change – and carbon emissions – aren’t everything. Neither are biodiversity, water, forests, agriculture or coastal habitats and oceans, gender or communities, education, poverty and inequality or energy. In the big picture, the picture that counts, they are all important.

Saying this doesn’t make me a climate sceptic or a climate denier, or even a climate cynic. Far from it. But as the world gathers for COP22 in Marrakech, a year after the Paris Agreement, it is clear to me that if we are to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and meet our climate targets, we have to find a new way of doing things.

The overwhelming tendency, the modus operandi of development, is to operate in silos, or compartments, of our own disciplines, our own organisations, our own ministries and our own sectors, all of us working toward our own targets of success.

Ollivier Girard/CIFOR

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