Mass loss of wildlife caused by human consumption, WWF says

The Cerrado a vast tropical savanna ecoregion of Brazil is being cleared for soy monoculture

The Cerrado a vast tropical savanna ecoregion of Brazil is being cleared for soy monoculture Credit Adriano Gambarni PA

According to the 2018 edition of the Living Planet Report released Monday. between 1970 and 2014, there was a 60 percent decline, on average, among 16,700 wildlife populations around the world. Inch by inch and species by species, shrinking wildlife numbers are an indicator of the tremendous impact and pressure we are exerting on the planet, undermining the very living fabric that sustains us all: "nature and biodiversity", said Marco Lambertini, Director General, WWF International.

The WWF has previously issued separate reports on fish populations being halved over the last several decades. "That is the scale of what we have done." said Mike Barrett, science and conservation director at WWF.

"Decision makers at every level need to make the right political, financial and consumer choices to achieve the vision that humanity and nature thrive in harmony on our only planet, the report said".

The world's seabirds have also been significantly affected by humans, with 90 percent estimated to have plastic in their stomachs today, up from 5 percent in 1960, the report said.

"It is a wake-up call for our east coast to appear alongside notorious forest destruction hotspots such as the Amazon, Congo basin, Sumatra and Borneo", said the chief executive of WWF Australia, Dermot O'Gorman.

Ciaran Flood from the Irish Wildlife Trust says wildlife in Ireland is declining in line with global trends.

The report specifically looks at the importance of pollinators which are responsible for US$ 235-577 billion in crop production per year, and how a changing climate, intensive agricultural practices, invasive species and emerging diseases have impacted their abundance, diversity and health.

The report shows India's ecological footprint per person is less than 1.75 global hectares per person, the lowest among countries and much smaller than some countries in Europe or North America with values higher than 7 global hectares per person.

"If we want a world with orangutans and puffins, clean air and enough food for everyone, we need urgent action from our leaders and a new global deal for nature and people that kick starts a global programme of recovery", said Steele.

Over-exploitation of nature caused by agriculture and deforestation are the major causes behind 60 per cent of the wildlife and 87 per cent wetlands being wiped out, says the WWF report.

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.

A report published in 2013 by the National Parks and Wildlife Service on the conservation status of EU-protected Irish habitats and species, revealed that 91 per cent of habitats and 32 per cent of species were in "inadequate" or "bad" condition.

"Biodiversity has been described as the "infrastructure" that supports all life on Earth". Together, we must mobilize public and private actors to show greater action and ambition to reverse the devastating trend of biodiversity loss.

"Europe must lead by example by adopting an ambitious post-2020 European Union biodiversity strategy, and integrating biodiversity and climate protection into all relevant sectoral policies", she said.

S Korean Supreme Court orders Nippon Steel to compensate wartime forced laborers
Nadal pulls out of Paris Masters; will lose No. 1 ranking