How does decreasing their habitat affect species? It’s usually devastating. Usually their survival is compromised and they are critically endangered. That is the danger that there are less and less intact areas on the planet. There is hardly an ecologically intact earth left. Just 2% or 3%. Says the study published in Frontiers in Forests and Global Change.
Less every time
The percentage previously estimated was between 20% and 40%. Wilderness areas were identified more than 30 years ago. Protective and protective measures were prioritized. Research now focuses on intact habitats. This goal is promoted by the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity.
“We know that intact living space is increasingly being lost. Its value affects biodiversity and people, “said Dr Andrew Plumptre in a statement, who works in the Cambridge Major Biodiversity Secretariat and is the lead author of the study.
Eastern Siberia is one of the areas identified as functionally intact. Also northern Canada for boreal biomes. And from the tundra parts of the tropical forests of the Amazon basin and the Congo. Also the Sahara desert.
It is true that there is almost no ecologically intact earth left. There is hope, however. The authors say that up to 20% of the planet’s land surface could be restored. This would be done by reintroducing just a few species into the remaining intact habitat. Plumptre says so. “Through the targeted reintroduction of lost species, the area can be enlarged by up to 20% with ecological integrity. This would be done in areas where the human impact is still small. Provided that threats to its survival can be addressed. ‘
The recognition of these special places within an intact habitat is required. And plans to focus restoration on areas where ecological integrity could be restored.