(ORDO NEWS) — A new study by American scientists warns of an imminent “biodiversity crisis” caused by population growth. Over the next 30 years, the world’s cities will grow by 1.53 million square kilometers.
It is important to remember that earthlings are not only people, but also animals.
Researchers from Yale University, USA, have calculated how the expansion of cities will affect the biodiversity of the planet.
Scientists have found that on a global scale, this process directly threatens a total of 855 animal species at real risk of extinction, especially in “biodiversity hotspots”.
Particularly vulnerable species include the Javan loris and the purple tanager songbird. Species that will be endangered are concentrated in areas of Mexico, the Caribbean, Haiti, Nigeria, Cameroon, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, Brazil and Ecuador.
“One of the goals of the study was to identify those species that are not just threatened with extinction, but that are specifically threatened by urban land development,” says author Rohan Simkin.
“I think almost everyone is well aware of the climate crisis right now, but I’m not sure the average person is aware of the biodiversity crisis.”
Why is biodiversity under threat?
Over the next 30 years, the world’s urban population is projected to increase by 2.5 billion people, significantly increasing urban sprawl.
Much of this urban expansion is projected to take place in biodiversity hotspots – areas rich in species that are at high risk of destruction due to human activities.
Previous studies show that urban land expansion will affect more than 30,000 terrestrial species worldwide. This does not mean that every animal will be in mortal danger, but this will affect the number and quality of life.
But the researchers say a focus on urban planning that protects habitats, such as cities with lots of green spaces, could limit the harmful impact of new urban jungle areas.
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