Oct. 31, 2018

According to the Living Planet report 2018 released by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), India’s soil biodiversity is in grave danger.


  • The Living Planet Report, WWF’s flagship publication released every two years. The Living Planet Report 2018 is the twelfth edition of the report.

  • It is a comprehensive study of trends in global biodiversity and the health of the planet.

Report summary:

  • We are living through the Great Acceleration – a unique event in the 4.5 billion-year history of our planet – with exploding human population and economic growth driving unprecedented planetary change through the increased demand for energy, land and water.

  • The key drivers of biodiversity decline remain overexploitation and agriculture. Indeed, of all the plant, amphibian, reptile, bird and mammal species that have gone extinct since AD 1500, 75% were harmed by overexploitation or agricultural activity or both.

  • Overexploitation and ever-expanding agriculture are driven by spiralling human consumption. Over the past 50 years our Ecological Footprint – one measure of our consumption of natural resources – has increased by about 190%.

  • Changing land use due to agricultural intensification and urban expansion is one of a number of key drivers of pollinator loss. Our food production depends heavily upon these pollinators.

  • The Living Planet Index (LPI), provided by the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), shows an overall decline of 60% in the population sizes of vertebrates between 1970 and 2014 (figure 7) – in other words, an average drop of well over half in less than 50 years.

  • There is a urgent need for a new global deal for nature and people with clear, ambitious goals, targets and metrics, to reverse the devastating trend of biodiversity loss currently impacting the one planet we all call home.

  • India, along with Pakistan, China, several countries in Africa and Europe, and most of North America among countries whose soil biodiversity faces the highest level of risk.

  • The population of fish, birds, mammals, amphibians and reptiles have dwindled by an average of 60% from 1970 to 2014, and fresh-water species have declined by 83% in the same period.

  • Since 1960, the global ecological footprint has increased by more than 190%. Globally, the extent of wetlands was estimated to have declined by 87% since 1970.

Source : The Hindu