World's wildlife populations have decreased by 69%: Report
Monitored wildlife populations- mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish - have seen a devastating 69% drop on average since 1970
NEW DELHI: Monitored wildlife populations- mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish - have seen a devastating 69% drop on average since 1970, according to WWF's Living Planet Report (LPR) 2022. The report highlights the stark outlook of the state of nature and urgently warns governments, businesses and the public to take transformative action to reverse the destruction of biodiversity.The Living Planet Report also establishes and confirms that the planet is in the midst of a global double emergency. The interlinked emergencies of climate change and the loss of biodiversity hold the key to our actions. It is clear: unless we stop treating these emergencies as two separate issues, neither problem will be addressed effectively.
Commenting on the findings, Marco Lambertini, Director General of WWF International, said: "We face the double emergencies of human-induced climate change and biodiversity loss, threatening the well-being of current and future generations. WWF is extremely worried by this new data showing a devastating fall in wildlife populations, in particular in tropical regions that are home to some of the most biodiverse landscapes in the world."
With its biggest dataset yet, featuring almost 32,000 populations of 5,230 species, the Living Planet Index (LPI), provided within the report by ZSL (Zoological Society of London), shows it is within tropical regions that monitored vertebrate wildlife populations are plummeting at a particularly staggering rate. In particular, the LPI data reveals that between 1970 and 2018, monitored wildlife populations in Latin America and the Caribbean region have dropped by 94% on average.
Around the world, the report indicates that the main drivers of wildlife population decline are habitat degradation and loss, exploitation, the introduction of invasive species, pollution, climate change and disease. Several of these factors played a part in Africa's 66% fall in its wildlife populations over the period, as well as Asia Pacific's overall 55% drop. In less than a lifetime, monitored freshwater populations have fallen by an average of 83%, the largest decline of any species group. Habitat loss and barriers to migration routes are responsible for about half of the threats to monitored migratory fish species.
Ravi Singh, Secretary General & CEO, WWF India, said, "The Living Planet Report 2022 shows how climate change and biodiversity loss are not only environmental issues but economic, development, security and social issues too – and they must therefore be addressed together. Climate Change in India willimpact key areas, such as water resources, agriculture, natural ecosystems, health and the food chain," stated a press release.