Thursday, 15 November, 2018

WWF: 60% of wildlife wiped out

Only a global pact on the scale of the Paris Agreement on climate change will save the natural world from irreversible collapse the World Wide Fund for Nature said This is the last generation that can save nature - WWF
Doris Mccormick | 01 November, 2018, 14:39

Ocean habitats are also in steep decline with the report warning up to 90 per cent of the world's coral reefs might be gone by mid century and listing seagrass meadows among the most threatened ecosystems on earth.

In the years since man first walked on the moon, his footprint back on back on earth has polluted three-quarters of the planet, and caused the wildlife population to plummet by a catastrophic 60 per cent, an worldwide report warns today. "Exploding" levels of human consumption, over-exploitation of natural resources such as over-fishing, cutting down forests and the use of pesticides in agriculture are having dire effects on the system that humanity is dependent upon.

Tanya Steele, Chief Executive at WWF said: "We are the first generation to know we are destroying our planet and the last one that can do anything about it".

Humans have exploited nature to such an extent that a staggering 60 per cent of the wildlife and 87 per cent wetlands have been wiped out since 1970.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.

WWF's Living Planet Report 2018 warns that ours is possibly the last generation of humans with a chance to act and reverse this trend.

Human activity was also blamed for the devastating effects that the Amazon has felt in recent years.

The dominant causes of current biodiversity decline are overexploitation, such as overfishing, and agricultural activity.

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The "Living Planet Report" focused on vertebrate species, which includes mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians.

"The statistics are scary, but all hope is not lost", Professor Ken Norris of the Zoological Society of London added. 'There is a limit to what we can destroy, and there is a minimum amount of nature that we need to preserve, ' Lambertini added, noting in the study that the global community has a 'rapidly closing window for action'.

"We have an opportunity to design a new path forward that allows us to co-exist sustainably with the wildlife we depend upon", he said.

Though India is among the countries with the lowest ecological footprint of consumption, the report points out that it is among the worst when it comes to soil biodiversity. The welfare of up to 3 billion people who rely on wildlife to eat and work has reduced because of land degradation, and services relying on nature are worth around $125 trillion globally, the report said.

According to the forecast, WWF, 2020 will be critical, as will be announced the results of measures taken in the framework of the Paris climate agreement.

The report presents a sobering picture of the impact of human activity on the world's wildlife, forests, oceans, rivers and climate, underlining the rapidly closing window for action and the urgent need for the global community to collectively rethink and redefine how we value, protect and restore nature.

"We can be the founders of a global movement that changed our relationship with the planet, that saw us secure a future for all life on Earth, including our own", WWF International Director General Marco Lambertini wrote in the report.

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