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Earth Enters 6th Mass Extinction

posted 7/15/2017 4:17:37 AM |
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tagged: earth, insects, consumerism, eco, system
  Pompoms

Animal populations across the planet have decreased by as much as 80 per cent since 1900 - an event akin to "biological annihilation". The consequences for humans could be severe.

Lions used to roam across most of Africa, southern Europe, and the Middle East, all the way to northwestern India. Today, there are fewer than 25,000 lions left in the wild, down from an estimated 400,000 in 1950. They cling to life in the confines of Sub-Saharan Africa, and the wilds of India's Gir forest. The vast majority of the lion population are gone - and their decline is thought to be but one part of a mass extinction event.

Between 1900 and 2015, nearly half of 177 surveyed mammal species lost more than 80 per cent of their distribution. Billions of populations of mammals, birds, reptiles and amphibians have been lost all over the planet, prompting scientists to suggest we have now entered a sixth mass extinction akin to a "biological annihilation".

Professor Gerardo Ceballos, at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, says that now, "the extinction of mammal populations, although varying from species to species, [is] a global phenomenon". [Elephants are under threat too, Whales and more]

His work, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, tracks the significant rate of mammalian extinction across the Earth - describing it as a “frightening assault on the foundations of human civilisation”.

In Earth's history, there have been five mass extinction events. The last, during the Cretaceous–Paleogene period, brought an end to the dinosaurs. A combination of volcanic activity and asteroid impacts resulted in the loss of 75 per cent of life on the planet, 65 million years ago. In the 21st Century, with anthropogenic changes to the climate and landscape of the world, a sixth extinction event could be on the horizon.

Large regions in all continents have lost 50 per cent or more of the populations of the evaluated mammals from 1900 to 2015. While the small sample size only covers 177 species, and is biased to larger mammals, this figure can be used to visualise likely trends in global population losses. Assuming that on average each of the 10,000km2 occupied quadrats studied held a single population of the species found within it, Ceballos estimates that roughly 58,000 populations of the 177 mammals examined have gone extinct.

Records covering 4,424 species, collected between 1970 and 2009 by the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology found losses across the UK. Of pollinators such as bees, moths and hoverflies, 28 per cent are in decline. Pest controllers such as ants have seen a 16 per cent loss.

“We need insects to pollinate our crops, like bees – we can’t do it by hand – and if we lose natural pest controls, less food will be available. If we lose those functions, the crops we eat won’t be able to be pollinated so the price of food would go hugely up and certain foods we wouldn’t be able to eat such as fruits including strawberries, raspberries and apples.”

Forest loss resulting from regional and global economic pressures, the impacts of hunting, illegal trade, and other anthropogenic threats on global animal populations have led to sustained habitat loss and changes to many ecosystems, from Australia's coral reefs to the Amazonian rainforest.

The likelihood of Earth's extinction lies in the causes of population extinctions, Ceballo says. Rapid loss of animals across the globe and comparable losses in the diversity of plants, indicate a co-extinction of plants. Plants, vital sources of food, medicine and central absorbers of atmospheric CO2, are key to human life. Without them, an extinction level event for humans grows likely.

"The sixth mass extinction is already here and the window for effective action is very short," Ceballo says, "probably two or three decades at most. All signs point to ever more powerful assaults on biodiversity in the next two decades, painting a dismal picture of the future of life, including human life."

11th July, 2017. Read more Earth has entered into a sixth mass extinction event


Consumerism and overpopulation is responsible, people selfishly don't care. Earth will not be kind to their offspring.





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Comments:
moon_watcher53

Jul 15 @ 10:06AM  
Too bad those creatures of the wild can't read or they would darn well know to
"Go forth and multiply" just like the ignorant human specie has done !!

Our last meal will probably be chewing on the carcass of another human !!
Pompoms

Jul 15 @ 10:40AM  
Our last meal will probably be chewing on the carcass of another human !!

I'd rather starve to death.

The Spaniard won, Venus lost the tennis.
jimnastics1

Jul 15 @ 11:23AM  
The Earth is already overpopulated with humans and it keeps going up.
It affects the environment negatively several ways and stresses the ecosystem.
I have been a proponent of 'population zero', which is a philosophy to
urge each couple to have 2 children only, no more.
There should be adjusted taxes based on how many children that you produce
with increasing penalties for each additional child more than the first 2.
Tax breaks for having kids should be eliminated.
Better education about the problem should be manditory in grade school,
as part of sex education.
Sublime_Lady

Jul 15 @ 2:18PM  
thanks for information .....

I do have lots and lots of bees who visit my backyard that has no grass. Just shrubs, flowers, mulch & couple of sitting areas. The water from the sump pump goes in a small pond that the various birds drink and bath in.

From Jim's comment ... I do agree.

Too many governments are run by big business and big business want as many workers to pay as cheap as possible. Supply and demand ... when there is a large supply of workers and not enough demand for work .. business can pay the workers pittance because as they quote "workers are a dime a dozen standing on the corner".

Pompoms

Jul 16 @ 5:43AM  
Thanks Lady, and Jim for your input.
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