We could lose these species if climate change heats Earth by over 1.5° Celsius

Edited By: Bharat Sharma WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Jun 02, 2021, 03:59 PM(IST)

Climate change (file photo) Photograph:( AFP )

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The devastation to ecosystems and species could become even massive if temperatures rise above 1.5 degree Celsius, depriving many species of food and survival, a new report by the WWF reveals

The risks posed by climate change encompass immediate disasters like earthquakes and floods. The crisis is essentially a slow killer, which has now picked up pace owing to the rising temperatures across the globe. If current goals of keeping global temperatures 1.5 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels fail, we could lose a lot of cherished animal species globally.

Coral systems which are responsible for building reefs are already disappearing from the oceans, threatening life in the ocean as we know it. If temperatures continue to rise, polar animals will lose their habitat, including penguins in Antarctica. The consequences are far-reaching in scope, threatening species like puffins in the UK and the black-headed squirrel monkey in the Amazon.

The devastation to ecosystems and species could become even more massive if temperatures rise above 1.5 degree Celsius, depriving many species of food and survival, a new report by the WWF reveals. The report assessed the effects of climate change on 12 key species in the world.

According to WWF, protecting animal habitats around the world remains key to prevent warming from exceeding 1.5 degree Celsius.  The report adds that quicker degradation of vegetation and complex ecologies would accentuate the devastating effects of climate change. For example - the more dirty our oceans become, the less carbon it can absorb. 

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Even a surge of 0.5 degree Celsius could be devastating to many species on Earth including snow leopards, hippopotamuses, monkeys, sea turtles, frogs and corals.  Many of these species are dependent on stable and consistent changes in weather for survival, but as patterns become erratic they could lose their edge over predators and even the ability to reproduce.

The cost of climate change is already too high! Since 1970, 68 per cent of global wildlife populations have plummeted. If governments around the world don’t pull up their socks soon, we may lose a lot of species over the next few decades.

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