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catmando
05-16-2008, 01:58 PM
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Published on Friday, May 16, 2008 by The Independent/UK
An Epidemic of Extinctions: Decimation of Life on Earth

The world?s species are declining at a rate ?unprecedented since the extinction of the dinosaurs?, a census of the animal kingdom has revealed. The Living Planet Index out today shows the devastating impact of humanity as biodiversity has plummeted by almost a third in the 35 years to 2005.0516 01 1

The report, produced by WWF, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and the Global Footprint Network, says land species have declined by 25 per cent, marine life by 28 per cent, and freshwater species by 29 per cent.

Jonathan Loh, editor of the report, said that such a sharp fall was ?completely unprecedented in terms of human history?. ?You?d have to go back to the extinction of the dinosaurs to see a decline as rapid as this,? he added. ?In terms of human lifespan we may be seeing things change relatively slowly, but in terms of the world?s history this is very rapid.?

And ?rapid? is putting it mildly. Scientists say the current extinction rate is now up to 10,000 times faster than what has historically been recorded as normal.

As nations meet for the Convention on Biological Diversity in Bonn, these alarming figures will cast a shadow over government pledges to make a ?significant? reduction in biodiversity loss by 2010. In fact, the report?s authors say that global inaction has already made such a goal totally unattainable.

?It?s very damning for the governments that are party to the convention that they are not able to meet the target they set for themselves,? said Mr Loh. ?The talk doesn?t get translated into action. We are failing, and the consequences will be devastating.?

Tracking nearly 4,000 species between 1970 and 2005, the team has not only revealed the destruction of the Earth?s wildlife, but also pointed the finger at the perpetrators of this devastation.

Ben Collen, extinctions researcher at ZSL, said: ?Between 1960 and 2000, the human population of the world has doubled. Yet during the same period, the animal populations have declined by 30 per cent. It?s beyond doubt that this decline has been caused by humans.?

The study picked out five reasons for species decline, all of which can be traced back to human behaviour: climate change, pollution, the destruction of animals? natural habitat, the spread of invasive species, and the overexploitation of species. At a time when America has finally added the polar bear to the endangered species list, it is emerging that the scale of species destruction reaches far beyond the headline animals. But as in the case of the polar bear, mankind?s behaviour needs to be radically changed in order to stop this pillaging of the Earth?s biodiversity.

The Yangtze river dolphin is a case in point. Scientists believe it is extinct, as successive searches for the freshwater mammal have proved fruitless. There are many reasons for its rapid path to extinction: collisions with boats, habitat loss and pollution. These factors all point back to one perpetrator: mankind.

Aside from tackling global emissions, the report recommended two ways that species decline could be combated - by avoiding the destruction of animals? natural habitat by overdevelopment or cultivation; and in avoiding the over-farming or fishing of individual species.

The implications of such drastic reductions in biodiversity are already having an impact on human life. ?Reduced biodiversity means millions of people face a future where food supplies are more vulnerable to pests and disease and where water is in irregular or short supply,? said James Leape, director general of WWF.

?No one can escape the impact of biodiversity loss because reduced global diversity translates quite clearly into fewer new medicines, greater vulnerability to natural disasters and greater effects from global warming. The industrialised world needs to be supporting the global effort to achieve these targets, not just in their own territories where a lot of biodiversity has already been lost, but also globally.?

? 2008 The Independent

The_Big_E
05-16-2008, 02:03 PM
Yet, everyday we discover new species that take their place...

1devil
05-16-2008, 02:04 PM
WetoldyousoWetoldyousoWetoldyousoWetoldyousoetcetc etc

Published on Friday, May 16, 2008 by The Independent/UK
An Epidemic of Extinctions: Decimation of Life on Earth

The world?s species are declining at a rate ?unprecedented since the extinction of the dinosaurs?, a census of the animal kingdom has revealed. The Living Planet Index out today shows the devastating impact of humanity as biodiversity has plummeted by almost a third in the 35 years to 2005.0516 01 1

The report, produced by WWF, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) and the Global Footprint Network, says land species have declined by 25 per cent, marine life by 28 per cent, and freshwater species by 29 per cent.

Jonathan Loh, editor of the report, said that such a sharp fall was ?completely unprecedented in terms of human history?. ?You?d have to go back to the extinction of the dinosaurs to see a decline as rapid as this,? he added. ?In terms of human lifespan we may be seeing things change relatively slowly, but in terms of the world?s history this is very rapid.?

And ?rapid? is putting it mildly. Scientists say the current extinction rate is now up to 10,000 times faster than what has historically been recorded as normal.

As nations meet for the Convention on Biological Diversity in Bonn, these alarming figures will cast a shadow over government pledges to make a ?significant? reduction in biodiversity loss by 2010. In fact, the report?s authors say that global inaction has already made such a goal totally unattainable.

?It?s very damning for the governments that are party to the convention that they are not able to meet the target they set for themselves,? said Mr Loh. ?The talk doesn?t get translated into action. We are failing, and the consequences will be devastating.?

Tracking nearly 4,000 species between 1970 and 2005, the team has not only revealed the destruction of the Earth?s wildlife, but also pointed the finger at the perpetrators of this devastation.

Ben Collen, extinctions researcher at ZSL, said: ?Between 1960 and 2000, the human population of the world has doubled. Yet during the same period, the animal populations have declined by 30 per cent. It?s beyond doubt that this decline has been caused by humans.?

The study picked out five reasons for species decline, all of which can be traced back to human behaviour: climate change, pollution, the destruction of animals? natural habitat, the spread of invasive species, and the overexploitation of species. At a time when America has finally added the polar bear to the endangered species list, it is emerging that the scale of species destruction reaches far beyond the headline animals. But as in the case of the polar bear, mankind?s behaviour needs to be radically changed in order to stop this pillaging of the Earth?s biodiversity.

The Yangtze river dolphin is a case in point. Scientists believe it is extinct, as successive searches for the freshwater mammal have proved fruitless. There are many reasons for its rapid path to extinction: collisions with boats, habitat loss and pollution. These factors all point back to one perpetrator: mankind.

Aside from tackling global emissions, the report recommended two ways that species decline could be combated - by avoiding the destruction of animals? natural habitat by overdevelopment or cultivation; and in avoiding the over-farming or fishing of individual species.

The implications of such drastic reductions in biodiversity are already having an impact on human life. ?Reduced biodiversity means millions of people face a future where food supplies are more vulnerable to pests and disease and where water is in irregular or short supply,? said James Leape, director general of WWF.

?No one can escape the impact of biodiversity loss because reduced global diversity translates quite clearly into fewer new medicines, greater vulnerability to natural disasters and greater effects from global warming. The industrialised world needs to be supporting the global effort to achieve these targets, not just in their own territories where a lot of biodiversity has already been lost, but also globally.?

? 2008 The Independent

Good luck getting people to care. the average person has no understanding of how important biodiversity is to the health of the planet.

IraHays
05-16-2008, 02:08 PM
Yet, everyday we discover new species that take their place...

lol.

cycle of life.

1devil
05-16-2008, 02:09 PM
Yet, everyday we discover new species that take their place...

Huh????????????

catmando
05-16-2008, 02:11 PM
Dammit at the typo in the title and I can't fix it. :cry: Something's wrong with my "m" key.

The_Big_E
05-16-2008, 02:25 PM
Huh????????????

Such as...

http://www.enn.com/wildlife/article/35519
http://www.conservation.org/FMG/Articles/Pages/01310803.aspx
http://www.nowpublic.com/environment/new-bird-species-discovered-1
http://www.smh.com.au/news/science/two-new-shark-species-found/2008/02/14/1202760479219.html


Seriously... just Google "New Species Discovered"... it's damned near a daily occurence. Is it sad to lose some of these species? Hell yeah... but history shows us there will be something to take it's place.

1devil
05-16-2008, 02:31 PM
Such as...

http://www.enn.com/wildlife/article/35519
http://www.conservation.org/FMG/Articles/Pages/01310803.aspx
http://www.nowpublic.com/environment/new-bird-species-discovered-1
http://www.smh.com.au/news/science/two-new-shark-species-found/2008/02/14/1202760479219.html


Seriously... just Google "New Species Discovered"... it's damned near a daily occurence. Is it sad to lose some of these species? Hell yeah... but history shows us there will be something to take it's place.

These new species did not suddenly pop up as a response to old ones vanishing. They were always there. **** some undiscovered species probably vanished before they were even discovered. This is simply a weird argument to present as a means of dismissing as unimportant the fact that species are disappearing at an alarming rate. At some point the lack of biodiversity will impact you, if not you your childeren and their children.

leafs43
05-16-2008, 02:41 PM
Problem: Humans are destroying wild life on this planet


Catmando's solution: Kill all humans that aren't super liberal.

The_Big_E
05-16-2008, 02:45 PM
These new species did not suddenly pop up as a response to old ones vanishing. They were always there. **** some undiscovered species probably vanished before they were even discovered. This is simply a weird argument to present as a means of dismissing as unimportant the fact that species are disappearing at an alarming rate. At some point the lack of biodiversity will impact you, if not you your childeren and their children.

Well... that wasn't really my point at all. My point is things come and go... just because a specie we DO know dissappears doesn't mean there isn't another we DON'T know that fills the void. Bio-Diversity, as you have stated IS very important... but just because the known is gone doesn't negate the unknown filling the void.

The bigger worry would be when we stop discovering new species altogether.