Climate change will become a steadily bigger threat to biodiversity by 2050, adding to damage from pollution and forest clearance to make way for agriculture, according to more than 550 experts in a set of reports approved by 129 governments.
Four regional reports covered the Americas, Asia and the Pacific, Africa, Europe and Central Asia:
– For the Americas, the report estimated that the value of nature to people – such as crops, wood, water purification or tourism – was at least $24.3 trillion a year, equivalent to the region’s gross domestic product from Alaska to Argentina. Almost two-thirds of those natural contributions were in decline in the Americas, it said.
– The Africa report said … unless governments take strong action to limit greenhouse gas emissions, “climate change may be the biggest threat to biodiversity” by mid-century.
– Concerning pollution, eight of 10 rivers around the world with most plastic waste were in Asia. On current trends, overfishing meant there could be no exploitable fish stocks in the Asia-Pacific region by mid-century.
– In Europe and Central Asia, wetlands have declined by half since 1970, threatening many species.