By Jennifer Weeks From climate change to omnipresent plastic waste , 2019 delivered a lot of discouraging environmental news. Several special reports this year from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change documented how global warming is altering the planet’s lands, forests , oceans and frozen regions . Another U.N. report warned that the Earth is losing species at an alarming rate , with around 1 million animal and plant species facing extinction. Key causes include changes in land use, such as clearing forests for agriculture; unsustainable fishing rates; climate change; pollution; and the spread of invasive species. Governments may seem unable or unwilling to confront these challenges, but scholars are proposing innovative solutions. Here are three articles that we published this year that put forth responses to urgent environmental challenges. 1. Cooling the Planet and Saving Species Climate change and biodiversity loss are interconnected problems that together can seem overwhelming. But in a study published in April, 18 scientists proposed a " Global Deal for Nature " that can help avert both catastrophic climate change and mass extinction. The plan identifies about a thousand "ecoregions" on land and sea that each contain unique ensembles of species and ecosystems, and […]

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