Action for a healthy and climate resilient planet

By: Dr. Abad CHABBI

Director of Research at the INRAE, France

ABSTRACT

We have the scientific evidence that not only we entered since the 1950s in the new geological epoch called the anthropocene but we have with arrogance under the effect of globalization and a single-minded focus on economic growth further deepened, enlarged and accelerated the anthropocene era. By doing so, we have drastically disturbed natural systems reaching now the planetary boundaries in a way that the earth system is starting to send invoices back to humanity. The successive reports of the Intergovernmental Panel expert group on Climate Change, the IPCC, and the scientific communities have since several years warned about the consequences of climate change and biodiversity loss in terms of risk for pandemics but also in terms of droughts, flood, heat waves and irreversible changes when crossing tipping points. The corona crisis is a not a black swan, it was predicted and it was not a question “if”, but “when” we would have this kind of abrupt feedback in a world that is so interconnected and taking so large risks in terms of loosing fundamental redundancy and diversity and stable relationships between humans and natural system.

Yet we are facing an earth system tragedy that forces us to adopt a system approach to understand that health, sustainability, prosperity and equity are all related and need to be tackled at the same time to reach sustainable development goals. In order to accomplish these goals within the safe operating space of the planetary boundaries of our planet, we should take the exit of the COVID crisis as an opportunity for change towards sustainability and equinity. The question is now of how can we break or recover from this crisis in a way that can place us in a much more stronger position towards a safe and just future for humanity on earth.

BRIEF BIOGRAPHY

Dr. Abad CHABBI, is a plant ecologist and soil biogeochemist. He worked at the Louisiana State University, USA; the Faculty of Environmental Science in Cottbus, Germany; the University of Pierre & Marie, Curie (UPMC), France; and the INRAE research council where he has been leading the National Observatory for Environmental Research-Agro-Ecosystems, Biogechemical Cycles and Biodiversity since 2009. Abad Chabbi is currently Director of Research at the INRAE (Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement) and his research centers on biogeochemical cycles in the context of climate and land use changes. He is also working with Strategic Research Infrastructures and interested in science policy and societal challenges. Throughout his career, Abad Chabbi has focused on coordinating large international and multidisciplinary projects, including ExpeER and AnaEE under the strategic European Commission framework (FP7). He also chairs a Working Group at the Joint FAO/IAEA Division of Nuclear Techniques in Food and Agriculture, at the Hercules Foundation for Investments in Research and Innovation”, Brussels… and provides expertise to the German Research Science Foundation, the European Commission’s Direction of Research and Innovation as well as the Chinese Academy of Science, the Canada Foundation for Innovation, the American National Science Foundation and the Academy of Finland Grant Review. Abad Chabbi is member of the National Ecological Observatory Network laboratory (NEON), Boulder, Colorado USA and Guest Professor at BIOREN-UFRO, Temuco, Chile. He supervised 16 PhD students and postdocs and has published more than 120 papers in international peer reviewed journals, book chapters, books, and special issues.

Main research lines
• Climate change and agroecosystem sustainability
• Link between soil carbon sequestration, nutrient availability and stoichiometry in the Plant-Soil System, plant diversity and the influence of land use management and climate change may have on these dynamics.
• Measurements and Modeling of Carbon and Nitrogen Cycling in Agroecosystems.