Trees are in grave danger: a third of species are listed as critically endangered in a recent research.
Agriculture, logging, and livestock husbandry are putting nearly one-third of tree species at risk of extinction, according to a new analysis.
Hundreds of tree species are on the verge of extinction, like the Menai whitebeam, which has only 30 trees in its native North Wales.
Humans use one out of every five tree species for food, fuel, lumber, medicines, horticulture, and other purposes.
Despite the usefulness of trees to people, at least 142 species have been reported as extinct, and many more are on the verge of extinction due to over-exploitation and mismanagement.
Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) released its first “status of the world’s trees” study today (WED) to analyze how the world’s almost 60,000 tree species are faring.
It discovered that 17,500 of them (30 percent) are endangered, with well-known species like magnolia among the most endangered.
The study found that oaks, maples, and ebonies are likewise endangered.
Clearing land for agricultural crops, logging for lumber, and clearing forest for animals are the most serious challenges.
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Climate change is also becoming a greater issue, with many trees at risk of losing suitable habitat as temperatures rise and weather patterns shift, with cloud forest species in Central America being particularly vulnerable.
At least 180 tree species, including magnolias in the Caribbean, are directly threatened by sea-level rise and harsh weather, while increased fire hazards are a big threat to trees in Madagascar and a risk to US oak species.
“This report is a wake-up call to everyone around the world that trees need help,” said BGCI Secretary-General Paul Smith.
“Every tree species is important to the millions of other species that rely on trees, as well as to people around the world.
“For the first time, we can specify exactly which tree species need our support, due to the information supplied by the status of the world’s trees report, so policymakers and conservation experts can deploy the resources and skills needed to avert future extinctions.”
Over the last five years, more than 60 institutions and 500 experts have examined the extinction risk for the world’s 58,497 tree species as part of the Global Tree Assessment, which has seen more than 60 organizations and 500 experts study the extinction risk for the world’s 58,497 tree species.
Chairman of the International Union for Conservation, Jon Paul Rodriguez. “Brinkwire News in Condensed Form.”