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eco-enviro

November 05, 2018 - The Vegan Authority

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Five countries contain 70% of the wilderness left in the world

Five countries contain 70% of the wilderness left in the world
Artic HareFile Photo / © Photabulous!

Scientists from the University of Queensland (UQ) and the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) warned that Earth’s last wilderness will remain intact “only if it is recognised within international policy frameworks.” 

Their report, published in the journal Nature on Wednesday, maps the five countries — Russia, Canada, Australia, the United States, and Brazil — harboring the last totally natural habitats. These top five countries alone, contain more than 70% of the world's remaining wilderness.

They also called on international organizations as well to make the health of these ecosystems an explicit target in any international policy framework, such as the United Nations’ Strategic Plan for Biodiversity or the Paris climate agreement. In addition, the five key countries containing the intact ecosystems were encouraged to limit new industrial activity. If no action is taken, the report author's warn that Earth’s last remaining wildernesses are at risk of “disappearing completely.” 

A century ago, only 15% of Earth’s surface was used to grow crops and raise livestock. Today, more than 77% of land (excluding Antarctica) and 87% of the ocean has been modified by the direct effects of human activities.

This marks further evidence of the Anthropocene, a proposed epoch dating from the commencement of significant human impact on the Earth's geology and ecosystems, including, but not limited to, anthropogenic climate change.

The study comes in the wake of an alarming report from the World Wildlife Fund this week, which estimated that human activity has decimated wildlife population by 60% in the past fifty years.

VA


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