MOSCOW: Populations of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish on the planet have declined by 52 percent since 1970, according to the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) Living Planet Report 2014.
“The Living Planet Index (LPI), which measures trends in thousands of vertebrate species populations, shows a decline of 52 per cent between 1970 and 2010. In other words, the number of mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians and fish across the globe is, on average, about half the size it was 40 years ago,” the report said.
The report’s more precise measurements indicate that terrestrial species declined by 39 percent between 1970 and 2010, while freshwater species showed an average decline of 76 percent in the same period. Marine species declined by 39 percent in that period.
“This is a much bigger decrease than has been reported previously,” the WWF report, compiled jointly with the Zoological Society of London, the Global Footprint Network (GFN) and the Water Footprint Network (WFN), warned.
“The absence of birds in the sky, and otherwise life in our forest. . .in the oceans. . .send us very clear signals that we are not living sustainably,” Marco Lambertini, Director General of WWF International said.
“The report is showing also more broadly that our footprint on the planet is increasing, continues to rise,” Lambertini added. “We are on total unsustainable path, we know that very clearly now, we are overshooting, we are leaving beyond the planetary boundaries.”
“There is not going to be a prosperous future for humanity in a degraded environment. A healthy, diverse, productive and natural environment is key to any truly and sustainable development path,” he said.