Based on the estimates from the Zoological Society of London, over two-thirds of the wildlife population will disappear by 2020. This decline started in 1970, and it includes many species of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish.
Worse, it doesn’t look like this decline is slowing, despite the biologists’ efforts. Over the past four decades, the vertebrate population dropped off by 58 percent, according to recent findings. Scientists predict that this drop will go to 67 percent by 2020 if all countries don’t take active measures to address this issue.
In the worst-case scenario, if this pace remains the same, wildlife will be totally wiped out by 2050. Biologists have monitored 14,000 populations consisting of 3,700 animal species. Although the statistics may vary, this massive decline will continue because it is caused by a broad array of causes such as loss of wildlife habitat, over-exploitation, invasive species, diseases spread by human actions, environmental pollution, and climate change among others.
The largest extent of this negative impact has occurred in lakes and rivers, as these freshwater environments have lost 81 percent of all species from 1970 to 2012. During the same period, terrestrial vertebrates suffered a 38 percent drop-off, whereas the population of marine species fell by 36 percent.
These estimates represent the solid proof that all animal species are suffering due to the negative impacts caused by human excess.
Experts concluded that the leading cause of this problem could be attributed to the capitalist economy which is support by an anarchic development that only cares about profit without considering the long-term consequences on Earth’s wildlife population.
Also, fertilizer consumption and greenhouse gas emissions play a major role in this downfall. For instance, bees have suffered a massive decline over the past few years especially due to chemicals used in crops.
If all pollinators become extinct, the world will starve, because they provide 80 percent of all food sources. Agricultural development has led to a tremendous loss of habitat, while many forests were wiped out due to deforestation.
Biologists stress that wildlife population decline will take its toll on human communities as well because we cannot live in a world without vertebrate species. That is why specialists are trying to raise awareness among countries to encourage them to bring their contribution to an international conservation initiative.
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