Global extinction crisis looming

October 30, 2010

“A growing number of creatures could disappear from the earth, with one-fifth of all vertebrates and as many as a third of all sharks and rays now facing the threat of extinction, according to a new survey assessing nearly 26,000 species across the globe.

“In addition, forces such as habitat destruction, over-exploitation and invasive competitors move 52 species a category closer to extinction each year, according to the research, published online Tuesday by the journal Science …

“While many industrialized countries have undertaken conservation efforts at home and helped fund this work overseas, ‘the reality is we're still exporting degradation across the world’ by taking food and other resources from the developing world, according to co-author Nicholas K. Dulvy.

“‘We’ve transformed a third of the habitable land on earth for food production,’ said Dulvy, who co-chairs the IUCN’s shark specialist group. ‘You can’t just remove that habitat without consequences for biodiversity.’”

— October 27 Washington Post.

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