Andre Wehrli works in the Swiss Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and he visits Nerja once a year to enjoy the town with his family. As an expert in sustainable development, Andre told us a lot of interesting things about taking care of the environment and the protection of nature.
– What are the major environmental problems in the world of today?
Nowadays, there are many major ecological problems and they are often caused by the overexploitation of nature’s resources. The planet’s global warming is a really urgent problem, but also the lack of clean water, the depletion of biodiversity and natural habitats (both in amount and quality) are also very important problems.
– Why is taking care of the environment so important?
We have a unique planet, a unique world, and the environment is our best life insurance. It is not possible to live without the environment and natural resources. However, our planet can perfectly survive without the presence of human beings… That is the question.
– What can we do in our own homes in order to promote sustainable development?
We have to change our own lifestyle. Our way of development is clearly not sustainable. It does not work. It is possible, but it is not free. It costs money and welfare. To make the world better, we can travel by train or by bicycle, we can turn off the car engine at a semaphore with red lights, we can shut down the TV stand-by, we can update our homes with solar panels or a better isolation system, we can consume less, especially meat.
– What is the role of private companies regarding the care and protection of nature?
It is obvious that private companies play a very important role in trying to change the world. In the road to development, they are the engine that makes that development work. What is happening now, however, is that natural resources do not have a real price, and that is the reason why they are so easy to exhaust. So, it is necessary to put on “economic barriers”, with laws, regulations, etc. and it is also important to reduce the consumption level, encouraging a normal and coherent management of the available resources.