- Associated Press - Wednesday, June 6, 2012

RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) - A United Nations report warns that the earth’s environmental systems “are being pushed towards their biophysical limits” and that sudden, irreversible and potentially catastrophic changes are looming.

The UN’s Environment Program says that climate change, the depletion of the ozone layer, plummeting fish stocks and the mass extinction of animals are among the most worrisome environmental threats.

The 525-page report released Wednesday said little or no progress has been made in recent years toward meeting international targets for reducing environmental destruction.

The report calls on policymakers to take urgent action. Achim Steiner is the UN program’s head and he says the UN’s mega-conference on sustainable development to be held in Rio de Janeiro this month would be the ideal forum to take the steps needed to prevent an environmental catastrophe.

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