March 24, 2018
The United Nations issues four reports stating that the Earth is losing plants, animals and clean water at a dramatic rate.
The Americas, Europe, Central Asia, Africa, the Asia-Pacific: none are doing well.
Severe declines in the numbers of elephants, tigers and pangolins, the most visible and charismatic of the thousands of species that are in trouble.
Crucial habitat has been cut apart, alien species have invaded places, chemicals have hurt plants and animals, wetlands and mangroves that clean up pollution are disappearing and the world’s waters are over fished.
Man-made climate change is getting worse and global warming will soon hurt biodiversity as much as all the other problems combined.
“We keep making choices to borrow from the future to live well today.” Jake Rice, Canada’s chief government scientist for fisheries and oceans, who co-chaired the Americas report.
Are things pretty dire? “Yes.” Stuart Pimm, Duke University conservationist.
By 2040 the Americas will have 15 percent fewer plants and animals than now. Nearly a quarter of all species are threatened, nearly two-thirds are declining and more than one-fifth are decreasing strongly.
28 percent of the species living in Europe are threatened.
More than 20 percent of Africa’s species are threatened, endangered or extinct.
If trends continue, there will be no exploitable fish stocks in the Asia-Pacific by 2048. Around the same time, the region will lose 45 percent of its biodiversity and about 90 percent of its crucial corals.
The outlook is bleak if society doesn’t change. Robert Watson, team chairman, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy on Biodiversity and Ecosystem.
There are only 2 Northern White Rhinoceroses left in the world.
Only man and the pack rat foul their own nest.