10 reasons why we may not save the world in time
Can 1,400 leading scientists be wrong? Reading an article on the Times Online today I get the feeling that we, as a planet, had better hope so.
The sensationalist headline reads 'Humanity's very survival' is at risk, says UN and the details of the story do nothing to make me think that they were being flippant. The report was drafted and researched by almost 400 expert scientists, and their findings were subjected to further review by another 1,000 of their peers.
What follows is a quick list of 10 selected facts quoted within the article (those of a nervous disposition should look away now):
- 30% of amphibians are under threat of extinction
- 23% of mammals are under threat of extinction
- 12% of birds are under threat of extinction
- 10% of the world’s major rivers runs dry every year before it reaches the sea
- The world’s population has grown by 34% to 6.7 billion in 20 years
- 73,000km2 of forest is lost across the world each year – 3.5 times the size of Wales
- 60% of the world’s major rivers have been dammed or diverted
- Populations of freshwater fish have declined by 50% in 20 years
- More than 50%of all cities exceed WHO pollution guidelines
- The United Nations Environment Programme states that the “point of no return” was fast approaching.
That really should put a fearsome dread into your soul, and make you ask what you can do, right now, to make a difference.
If it doesn't, well, you could always cross your fingers and hope they were wrong.