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One million species of the planet are at risk of extinction. The alarm comes from a global report launched by the United Nations. At the base of the sad future that could irreparably affect biodiversity, the devastating hand of man. Deforestation, intensive development, overfishing, pollution, hunting, climate change are just some of the triggers.
The consequences of this disturbing picture could also affect humans themselves closely. "The evidence is clear: nature is in danger. So we are too”Commented Sandra Díaz, co-director of the Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services.
On May 6, the "Summary for Policy Makers”, A 40-page document anticipating the full report. In all likelihood the final document will exceed 1,500 pages. This is the first and most complete photograph of the state of world biodiversity from 2005 to today. In fact, the report is based on 15,000 scientific and government sources and was written by 145 experts from over fifty countries.
The data collected does not allow you to sleep peacefully. In some tropical forests the insects have almost disappeared. The oceans are suffering severely from the human footprint. The greatest dangers are represented byplastic pollution, from overfishing, from acidification. A set of contributing causes that is progressively depleting ocean habitats: in some areas, life is almost absent and only green slime remains.
But the sad report doesn't stop there. Three quarters of the Earth's environment has been significantly changed: more than a third of the world's surface and nearly 75% of freshwater resources are now used for crops or livestock. More than 40% of amphibians are at risk of disappearing, 33% of corals and over a third of marine mammals.
The risk of extinction in Italy
Our country's biodiversity is also in serious danger. Despite the varied fauna present in the Peninsula, the WWF has been reporting for some time now that at least five species are in danger of disappearing due to threats such as climate change or poaching. These are the Marsican bear, Bonelli's eagle, the bearded vulture, the Aeolian lizard and the Egyptian vulture.
For its part, the Lipu reminds that in Italy 50% of common bird species, including swallows, sparrows and larks, are currently in decline.
The UN report is looming as yet another alarm bell for a planet that appears more and more on the verge of collapse. The appeal to collective responsibility is stronger than ever: either now or never.