Go on almost any long flight over land and see a whole lot of empty out there. And yet, the wild places are in the minority, and they are shrinking. So are the populations of wildlife that live on them. According to a satellite survey, only about 23% of the land remains wild. The rest is almost evenly divided between managed for people (cities, et al ~ 37%) or production (farms, ranches, and managed forests ~ 40%.) Of the remaining wild land, much of it is uninhabitable tundras and deserts. The term ‘loss of habitat’ is given as a common cause of the 100x to 1,000x increase in extinctions; but that is easy to trivialize as one species loses its forest or another loses its wetlands. More people are using more land, and the population continues to grow. The researchers suggest it isn’t too late, but we have to act and change, because continuing is unsustainable.

One thought on “Too Little Land Left

  1. Pingback: Data That Matters June 2018 | Pretending Not To Panic

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