A fresh set of estimates by biologists now suggests that species with backbones are starting to vanish quicker compared to the time since dinosaurs became extinct. The situation has got so bad that human beings are now endangered as well. Paul Ehlirch is a researcher from Stanford University who stated that the study clearly shows that the world has now entered the 6th mass extinction event. It turns out that this event was triggered by humans.
Biologists are known to have believed that planet Earth is in the midst of a great extinction event. Critics have made the argument that the estimates somewhat overstate the actual facts on the matter. Scientists usually compare the extinction rate to the background extinction rate in order to figure out what a major extinction event is. Just so that it is clear, background extinction rate is the rate at which one expects species to vanish fro the face of the Earth.
New research now presents a background extinction rate which is two times as high as the estimates that scientists have seen before. Though, researchers have discovered that animals disappear from the face of the Earth nearly fifteen to a hundred times quicker than the rest of the species. In addition, researchers have discovered that the primary reason behind mass extinction is not a major event like a meteor strike or volcanic eruption. On the contrary, the primary reason suggested is human activity. To be more specific, there are a total of four culprits.
These include: toxins which poison the ecosystem, carbon emissions which lead to climate change, land clearing and introduction of invasive species. Researchers did add that mankind can still prevent biodiversity loss with the help of aggressive conservation of resources. Though, those chances are getting slimmer and slimmer as time wears on.