The World Wildlife Fund have recently published an in-depth report that clearly shows that half the animals in the world have disappeared since 1970 because of uncontrollable human expansion. This Living Planet report looked at 10,380 populations of 3,038 species across the planet and found that populations of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish have declined on average by 52% in the last 40 years. In terms of freshwater creatures the situation is even more critical, with a population collapse of 75% over the same period. Almost the entire decline is due to human activity, through habitat loss, deforestation, climate change, over-fishing and hunting, with the illegal wildlife trade, alone – devastating wildlife numbers.
The situation is worse in low-income countries, where wildlife populations have declined by 58% on average between 1970 and 2010. Latin America has the biggest decline, with 83% of animals lost in 40 years.
The Living Planet report also warned that human activity is outstripping the resources the Earth can provide, cutting down forests too quickly, overfishing and putting out more carbon dioxide than the planet can absorb, leading to climate change.. It is estimated Earth would need to be 1.5 times larger to soak up the damage caused by man. There seems to be an enormous disconnect between going to the supermarket and putting fuel in your car and the global statistics in this report.
David Nussbaum, chief executive of the WWF in the UK said: ” The scale of destruction highlighted in this report should be a wake-up call to us all.. We all, politicians, businesses and people, have an interest and a responsibility to act to ensure we protect what we all value: a healthy future for both people and nature.”