Earth On The Verge Of A Sixth Mass Extinction

The earth is on the verge of another mass extinction, according to a July 25 review in the journal science. The extinction would be sixth and would come approximately 65 million years after when the dinosaurs went extinct along with 75 percent of planet’s many species. Unlike the past when asteroid were blamed, this time humans would be responsible.

Biologists have warned that human impacts on animal biodiversity are an under-recognized form of global environmental change. Among terrestrial vertebrates, 322 species have become extinct since 1500, and populations of the remaining species show 25% average decline in abundance.”

The study also points to overexploitation, habitat destruction, and impacts from invasive species as continuing threats, but notes that soon, human-caused climate change will be the number one driver of defaunation. Diseases that come from pathogens introduced by humans are another growing threat.

David Biello, a scientist says, to avoid the sixth mass extinction we would probably have to employ more aggressive conservation, such as moving species to help them cope with a changing climate . Aggressive conservation might also mean killing off newcomer species to preserve or make room for local flora and fauna.

But if humans as a species don’t want to take our chances with a sixth mass extinction, we need to start taking drastic measures now.

The momentum is already moving against us and we would need to think.

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