Many Endemic species may go extinct if GHG emissions rise

A new study published in the journal Biological Conservation says that many animals and plants might face extinction if green house gas emissions continue to rise.

Key Findings of the Study

  • All the Endemic species in islands are at high risk of extinction due to climate change.
  • Four out of every five endemic species in mountains are at the high risk of extinction due to climate change.
  • 95% of marine species and 92% of land-based species will face reduction in numbers.
  • In tropical region, over 60% of endemic species are facing extinction due to climate change.
  • By maintaining the global heating well below two degrees Celsius as mentioned in the revised Paris Agreement will help to save majority of the species.

What is Global temperature increases by three degree Celsius?

According to the study if the global temperature increases by three degree Celsius, then a third of the endemic species living on land and half of endemic species living in sea will face extinction. At these temperatures, around 84% of species will face extinction in mountains. On Islands, all the 100% of the species will become extinct at these temperatures.

What will be the scenario in 2050?

According to the report, the following will occur in 2050:

  • By 2050, the islands in Indian Ocean, Sri Lanka, Philippines, and the Western Ghats will lose most of their endemic plants if the current situation prevails.
  • If the Greenhouse Gas Emissions increase, then the places such as Madagascar and Caribbean Islands will lose all their endemic plants by 2050.

How will Climate Change affect Endemic Species?

According to the report, the endemic species will be affected as follows:

  • The Endemic species are the most iconic plants and animals in the world. The species that are highly threatened by climate change are lemurs (especially those that are unique to Madagascar), snow leopard.
  • As compared to the species that are widespread, the endemic species are 2.7 times more likely to go extinct with unchecked temperatures.

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