“Humanity and the way we feed, fuel and finance our societies and economies is pushing nature and the services that power and sustain us to the brink,” says the Word Wildlife Foundation (WWF) in a newly released report this week. Officially entitled the “Living Planet Report 2018: Aiming Higher, ” incorporating research from almost 40 universities, conservations and intergovernmental organizations, the 75 document chronicles the effects of human activity/development on the worlds natural landscape over the course of the last 6 decades. Unfortunately, what they found was rather unsettling.
For example, some of the key findings from their research concluded that :
- Worldwide, populations of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, and amphibians have, on average, declined in size by 60% over the course of the last 40 years. 89% of mammals, birds, fish, reptiles and amphibians have been killed off in Central/South America alone over the same time, the single greatest population decline of any region on the globe.
- There has been an 83% decline/reduction in freshwater species since 1970.
- The Earth is estimated to have lost about 50% of its shallow water corals in the past 30 years.
- 6 billion tonnes of fish and invertebrates have been taken/eaten out of the worlds oceans since 1950.
- 20% of the Amazon rain forest has been cut down or destroyed over the last 50 years.
- Only 25% of the Earth’s combined landmass remains classified as undeveloped by human activity in 2018 – estimated to decline to 10% by 2050.
- The recent decline of the worlds bee population represents the single greatest threat to soil biodiversity and crop production.
- Including energy resources, clean water, food, medicines and more, global corporations now make on average $125 trillion dollars a year exploiting natural resources.
“Hope is not lost” however, states representatives at the World Wildlife Fund. Citing the Sustainable Development Goals project from the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the 2015 Paris Climate Agreement and Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), the WWF believes that we are reaching a critical turning point in human history – a time of change. Researchers hope to use their latest findings as an alarm bell of sorts, calling on world leaders to be more pro-active in the future. By the year 2020, the WWF hopes to have a new set of internationally recognized/enforced set of standards, procedures and protocols in place regulating global misconduct when it comes to the Earth’s environment. It is their hope that starting in the very near future, within the next 1-2 years, we can start reversing the trends of the last 6 decades and propel the Earth into a new age of sustainable development, utilizing Earths natural free energy for the benefit of all mankind, rather than exploiting it for financial corporate gain.
Full Study from WWF: