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More than 100,000 species are now categorised as ‘threatened’ for the first time in history.

Around 9,000 species have recently been added to the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species, bringing the total of threatened species to 105,732.

Human activities including hunting and fishing have been blamed for demise of animals including primates and freshwater fish.

‘Exploiting wildlife’

“With more than 100,000 species now assessed for the IUCN Red List, this update clearly shows how much humans around the world are overexploiting wildlife,” IUCN Acting Director General, Dr Grethel Aguilar, said in a statement.

“We must wake up to the fact that conserving nature’s diversity is in our interest, and is absolutely fundamental to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. States, businesses and civil society must urgently act to halt the overexploitation of nature, and must respect and support local communities and Indigenous Peoples in strengthening sustainable livelihoods.”

‘Unprecedented’

“This Red List update confirms the findings of the recent IPBES Global Biodiversity Assessment: nature is declining at rates unprecedented in human history,” added Jane Smart, Global Director of the IUCN Biodiversity Conservation Group. 

“Both national and international trade are driving the decline of species in the oceans, in freshwater and on land. Decisive action is needed at scale to halt this decline; the timing of this assessment is critical as governments are starting to negotiate a new global biodiversity framework for such action.”

Maria Chiorando

Maria is the editor of Plant Based News. As a former magazine editor, newspaper reporter, and features writer, her work has been published by The Guardian, The Huffington Post, and various regional newspapers, as well as Vegan Life magazine and Vegan Trade Journal. She has interviewed a huge range of people, from Prime Ministers to authors, activists, pop stars and actors, and enjoys the varied range of topics writing for PBN allows her to tackle.