analysis

The world’s biodiversity is on the brink. Can a UN summit make a difference?

Up to one million species face extinction. Environment Correspondent Daisy Dunne explores what’s at stake at this week’s UN biodiversity meeting hosted by China

Monday 11 October 2021 18:36
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<p>Up to one million species face extinction, scientists say </p>

Up to one million species face extinction, scientists say

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Statistics on the state of a natural world make for sombre reading. Humans and livestock now make up 96 per cent of the weight of mammals on Earth. Half of the planet’s surface is farmed. Up to one million species face extinction.

It has also never been clearer how much we humans rely on nature. More than half of the world’s GDP is dependent on it. Around three-quarters of all crops rely on pollinators.

To this backdrop, world leaders are meeting virtually this week for the first leg of a UN biodiversity conference, known as Cop15, being hosted by China.

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