About 40% of the world’s plant species face extinction

Previous research in 2016 showed that 20% of plant species were endangered, but the report “The State of the World’s Plants and Fungi 2020” published on Wednesday reveals the work of 210 scientists from 42 countries, Reveals scale, using better data and methodology.

“The rate of deforestation has increased as we have cleared the land to feed ever more people, global emissions are disrupting the climate system, new pathogens have threatened our crops and our health, illegal The trade has decimated the entire plant population, and non-native species are outperforming the local flora, “according to the RBG Kew report, which provides scientific research on plants and fungi as well as a well-known flora of West London Helps to run the garden.

And this is what we already know. Researchers say there is a huge difference in our information about plants, and more work is needed to assess the conservation status of more species.

Alexandre Antonelli, director of science at RBG Kew, told CNN “it’s a race against time” because we are losing plants as fast as we can name them.

“A world without those 40% is not the world we know today,” Antonelli said.

However, we do not know what the effects of losing them would be, he said, which can be “devastating”, as we do not understand which species play an important role, especially in ecosystems.

“Everything is connected,” Antonelli said.

The UN report says that the world has set a 2020 deadline to save nature but not a single goal has been met

Among those we know that they are endangered are medicinal plants, their survival is threatened due to the demand for naturally derived medicines. The study evaluated some 5,411 medicinal plants, and 723 are threatened.

Researchers say that the increased demand for herbal medicines is being attributed to the prevalence of some chronic diseases and the discovery of new treatments.

While some medicinal plants suffer overexploitation, Antonioli was only keen to emphasize how much plants and fungi have to offer.

The report recommends more funding for finding, naming and conserving species that may provide solutions to some of humanity’s biggest problems before extinction, such as food insecurity and climate change.

For example, humans rely on just 15 plants to serve 90% of our food needs, adding to the problem of malnutrition and making us vulnerable to climate change, but scientists at Kew identify 7,039 plant species That can be used as food.

& # 39;  Miracle Berry & # 39;  And among the 110 plant species tragic orchid identified this year

“Using this basket of untapped resources to diversify and transform food and production systems should be our moral duty to current and future generations,” said Stefano Padulosi, former senior scientist at the Alliance for Biodiversity International and International Center. Tropical Agriculture, who co-authored the report’s food chapter.

The situation is the same when it comes to the production of energy. As things stand, we use six crops – maize, sugarcane, soybean, palm oil, rapeseed and wheat – to make up 80% of global biofuel.

However, researchers have identified 2,500 plants that can be used to produce energy – possibly a huge boon for the 840 million people they estimate currently do not have access to electricity .

Worldwide reports say that since 1970, human activity has wiped out two-thirds of the world's wildlife.

“International collaboration can help us identify plants and fungi that will make clean, sustainable energy accessible to everyone,” said contributor Mary Suzan Ebbo, managing director of the Center for Research and Energy Conservation at Maker University, Uganda , Who said. The approach can be used to cut the continued use of wood and charcoal.

The report also describes a group of recently identified species, including two new relatives of cassava from Brazil, which experts say is future proof by making the food crop resistant to pests or diseases can give.

Such growth is less likely as we lose more species, and Antonelli believes that consumers need to make more sustainable choices while holding political leaders to focus on policy.

“We really have to catch the problem,” he said, underlining that international cooperation will be critical to reducing the threat and exploiting all that plants and fungi can do to help humanity.


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