Cape Town -The way we feed, fuel and finance our societies and economies is pushing nature, according to the World Wildlife Fund’s latest Living Planet Report.
The report, which comes out every two years, presents a sobering picture of the impact of human activity on the world’s wildlife, forests, oceans, rivers and climate. It underscores the rapidly closing window for action and the urgent need for the global community to rethink and redefine how we value, protect and restore nature.
The Living Planet Index, which tracks trends in global wildlife abundance, indicates that global populations of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles declined on average, by 60% between 1970 and 2014, the most recent year with available data.
The top threats to species identified in the report are directly linked to human activities including habitat loss and degradation and overexploitation of wildlife.
Over recent decades, human activity has severely impacted the habitats and natural resources we depend on such as oceans, forests, coral reefs, wetlands and mangroves. An example is that 20% of the Amazon has disappeared in just 50 years while the earth is estimated to have lost about half of its shallow water corals in the past 30 years.