The first-ever global assessment of forest biodiversity, Below the Canopy, shows that monitored forest-dwelling wildlife populations have shrunk on average by more than half (53%) since 1970. The new report by WWF highlights the multitude of threats forest-living species are facing and shows that habitat loss and degradation, primarily caused by human activity, is the cause of 60% of the threats to forests and forest species. Declines were greatest in tropical forests, such as the Amazon rainforest.
The landmark report shows forests, which are home to well over half of the world’s land-based species and one of our most important carbon sinks, are vital to the health of the planet. Forest wildlife, in turn, provides vital functions to keep forests healthy and productive, such as pollinating and dispersing seeds and other crucial roles that affect natural regeneration and carbon storage. If we are to reverse the decline in biodiversity worldwide and avoid climate crisis, we need to safeguard forests and the species that live in them.
WWF is calling on world leaders to declare a planetary emergency and secure a New Deal for Nature and People by 2020 to stop climate breakdown, safeguard our planet’s remaining natural spaces, and make our consumption and production model more sustainable. Protecting and restoring forests must be at the heart of this agreement.
To read more and to download the report, go to: http://wwf.panda.org/?351293
This information is shared by AFF on behalf of WWF