Magazine article The Christian Century

Biodiverse Praise

Magazine article The Christian Century

Biodiverse Praise

Article excerpt

A whale that washed up on a beach in the Philippines recently was found to have 88 pounds of plastic in its stomach. That event encapsulates a planetary crisis: the earth's magnificent creatures--including the very Leviathan that God enjoys watching "sport" in the sea (Ps. 104:28)--are being destroyed by human recklessness.

This destruction is happening faster than scientists had previously imagined. A panel of international experts reported in May that up to 1 million of the world's species are in danger of becoming extinct in the next half century-some within the next two decades. That amounts to one in every eight animal or plant species on the earth.

Although species extinction is always happening because of natural changes in habitat, what's new, according to experts from 50 countries (who belong to the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services), is the rate of extinction--it's tens to hundreds of times faster than normal. As wetlands are drained, forests are cleared, water is polluted, and oceans are overfished, animal and plant habitats shrink. Climate change puts additional stress on species, making it even harder for plants and animals to adapt. Biodiversity is in rapid decline.

The loss of entire species of insects, amphibians, fish, birds, and wildlife and the habitats they depend on will inevitably make human life more precarious. For example, a less biodiverse world with fewer species of crops will mean crops are less resilient. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.