If someone came up to you and told you that one third of all the species on the planet had been wiped out overnight; how would you react? Most likely utter disbelief until the facts were presented and then surely it would give any reasonable person serious pause for thought about what’s going on.
While it hasn’t been quite overnight, it was still a shock to read that between 1970 and 2003, global biodiversity fell by about 30%. It lends more credibility to us being in the midst of the 6th great extinction, one that’s occurring far faster than any other major extinction.
WWF’s Living Planet Index shows in the 30 years between 1970 and 2007, land species fell by 25 percent, marine species by 28 percent and freshwater species by 29 percent. Marine bird species dropped by a massive 30 percent just since the mid-1990s.
This is a huge warning sign, but only one of many we’re currently seeing and while it’s great to see more environmental coverage by mainstream media, this is *the* news story of the 21st century. This battle we face is bigger than WWI, WWII, the Cuban missile crisis, Vietnam, Iraq and any other conflict combined. This is now the battle to save ours among many other species and as other commentators have mentioned, something like a massive mobilization seen during the last world war is needed if we have any hope in winning this fight.
We seem to forget that Planet Earth will get on just fine without the majority of us or any us for that matter; we’d be just another species that would fade away. The planet owes us nothing.
Given the seriousness of the situation, the squashing of the climate bill by the US senate last week on the grounds that it may hurt the economy and costs jobs is just so tragic, it’s nearly funny – how can you have a healthy economy without a healthy environment to support it? Didn’t we go through all this “but we’ll lose jobs” rubbish with the computer revolution? New jobs will and are being created through clean-tech.