Environment

Wildlife numbers down by half in 40 years: WWF survey

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Wildlife populations around the world more than halved in the 40 years to 2010, a survey released on Tuesday said.

The report by WWF (World Wide Fund for Nature) International blames unsustainable human consumption patterns for an average 52 per cent drop in 10,380 populations of the 3,038 species surveyed.

“This latest edition of the >Living Planet Report is not for the faint-hearted,” WWF International chief Marco Lambertini said.

“We’re using nature’s gifts as if we had more than just one Earth at our disposal.” The report blames loss of habitat, hunting and fishing for the losses.

The report, drawn up jointly with the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), found the loss was greatest in the poorest countries - 58 per cent - while the richest countries had lifted numbers of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish by 10 per cent.

Aquatic animals fared the worst, with average population decline of 76 per cent. Terrestrial animal count dropped by 39 per cent.

ZSL Director of Science Ken Norris said the damage was “not inevitable but a consequence of the way we choose to live,” adding that “there’s an enormous disconnect between going to a supermarket and putting fuel in your car and the global statistics we’re talking about here.”

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Printable version | Jan 21, 2020 10:38:00 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sci-tech/energy-and-environment/wildlife-numbers-down-by-half-in-40-years-wwf-survey/article6460995.ece

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