Two-thirds of Earth’s ecosystems are in critical condition.
Scientists said that the preservation of ecosystems and species diversity has fallen to a critical level in 58% of the key ecoregions of the Earth.
According to researchers, this indicates the danger of a mass extinction and drastic reduction of animal numbers.
The research results were published in the journal Science.
Scientists have compiled the most extensive database of species on Earth, which includes almost 40 thousand different life forms living on different continents, and two million assessments of species diversity. The obtained data the researchers used to assess biome – the component parts of the Earth’s biosphere, which includes hundreds of related biological systems and ecological communities located in the same climatic zone. Such zones on land researchers identify 14.
As a result, the researchers found that 58% of these biomes are in critical condition. They died more than 20% of species of animals, microbes and other creatures that lived in them until the beginning of mass exploitation of land, deforestation and mining.
Reduction of species diversity by 10-20% leads to irreversible consequences, most of which will manifest itself in the future. Most of like the collapse of the ecosystems affected the Central regions of the United States and Canada, the Himalayas, Australia, southern Europe and Russia, Central Africa and South America. Least they have touched or will touch the North of Russia and Canada, Equatorial areas of Latin America, Indochina and tropical Africa. From all only three biomes: tundra, taiga and subtropical broadleaf forests are relatively safe.
In all other extinct about 20% of the species and threatened a sharp reduction of species diversity.