Due to climate change, a third of all tree species on this planet are now endangered. This means around 17,500 tree species risk the permanent chop.
This was revealed as per a global index published Wednesday, warning that climate change and global warming could tip some forests into a total ecosystem collapse.
The biggest threats to trees were revealed to be land clearance for farming and logging. The State of the World’s Trees report added that climate change was also ‘having a clearly measurable impact’.
The study looked at the risks of 58,497 tree species around the globe, finding that 30%, aka 17,500, are threatened with extinction, with a further 7% being listed as ‘possibly threatened’.
Only over 40% were listed as ‘not threatened’. Among the most threatened trees were magnolias, oaks, maples, and ebonies. 142 tree species were also found to be extinct, and more than 440 have fewer than 50 individual trees in the wild.
Jean-Christophe Vie, Director General of Fondation Franklinia remarked: ‘Many tree species are on the brink of extinction, some represented by one last living individual’. He added that it is ‘shocking’ how deforestation rates remain so high, given the crucial role trees play in our ecosystem.
Most of the world’s tree species (8,847) reside in the Amazon rainforest of Brazil, which is constantly under threat. The highest proportion of threatened species, however, were found to be in Africa, especially in Madagascar and Mauritius where 59% and 57% of trees are threatened.
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