IUCN status for Homo sapiens – Least Concern or Grave Concern?

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IUCN status for Homo sapiens – Least Concern or Grave Concern?

The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) classifies Humans (Homo sapiens) as “Least Concern” on its website. While this is true with respect to the threats faced by the human population, one could certainly not deem the presence of Humans on the earth as “Least Concern”. As a species we are a cause of grave concern to the very existence of this planet over a period of time.

Today we talk about all the environmental problems that the earth faces like global warming, climate change, carbon footprints, pollution, deforestation, desertification, habitat loss, etc. Who are the species responsible for these problems? It is us Humans; or to be more precise, humans in huge unsustainable numbers.

Unsustainable Human Population

Unsustainable Human Population – Copyright – Newcomb

Man – The intelligent one?

Sure we are the species with an evolved brain; an organ so wonderful that it has helped us to discover the fire, use tools for various things, overcome the threats posed by numerous deadly diseases and thereby multiply quite successfully. But at the same time, we are the most selfish species. We hunt and kill for sport unlike all other creatures that hunt only for food. We decorate ourselves and our homes with skins and furs of other innocent species after first torturing and killing them. We test things for our consumption on other animal species to make sure they are safe, not caring that we are hurting them in the process. We pollute and poison the air, water and the sky and encroach on the habitat of every other species. Species are vanishing at upto 10,000 times their natural rate of extinction.

Sure we have realized quite a while ago, that life is a full circle and ultimately everything we do against the rules of nature is bound to have an adverse effect on us. And a lot of us are trying to do things more friendly for the Earth. But to involve the entire the human population in the change process is turning out to be quite a challenge given the rate at which it is growing.

Needed – 3 Planet Earths by 2050

Today there are more than 7 billion humans on this earth. And we consume resources equivalent of 1.5 planets. Every day the number of humans on the earth is growing by 2,27,000. As the world population grows, so do the requirements of food, water, energy, land, etc.  At this rate of population growth and over-consumption, by the 2030s, we will need 2 planet Earths to sustain us and by 2050, we will need 3 planets. But of course we do not have 3 planets. So what can we do?

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

This Environment Day – June 5th 2015, let us all take a pledge to make a real attempt with the 3 R’s – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. I could go on about this, but I just found a perfect video that passes on the message very effectively. So Happy Environment Day 2015 and 7 Billion Dreams and 1 Planet People, So Consume with Care!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BMQfSMrYRQs

References

http://www.footprintnetwork.org/en/index.php/GFN/page/world_footprint/,http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2012/05/15/WWF-report-By-2050-we-will-need-3-planets/85601337117734/http://www.biologicaldiversity.org/programs/population_and_sustainability/?key=0