WWF’s Perspective on Climate Change

By WWF (quote from page 10)

“Climate change is threatening up to 1/3 of animal species with extinction. While the impacts of global warming are only just starting, the decisions that are influencing those impacts are being made now.

Climate change threatens to undo everything that conservation organizations like WWF have achieved over the last half-century. Polar bears may make the headlines, but in reality very few species will be unaffected by a changing climate.

Many species could become extinct. Even entire ecosystems – such as coral reefs, mountain habitats, and large blocks of tropical rainforests such as the Amazon – could completely disappear. Some plants and animals that have adapted to their environment over millions of years are vulnerable to even slight changes in temperature and rainfall. Warming and acidifying seas threaten coral reefs and krill – the basis of the marine food chain in many parts of the world. Large mammals like whales may be forced to travel further in search of food, often leaving the safety of the protected areas that WWF and others have fought so hard to secure.

Exploration for oil, coal and gas – and the transportation and infrastructure associated with it – is also a threat to many species. These activities include coal port expansion on the Great Barrier Reef, oil exploration on the edge of the Congo’s mountain gorilla habitat, and crude oil marine export off the lush west coast of Canada. In each of these places, we risk wildlife being a part of the price we pay for our current investment decisions. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Human beings will not be immune to the consequences of a changing climate. WWF’s mission is to protect the magnificent array of living things that inhabit our planet and to create a healthy and prosperous future in which humans live in harmony with nature. Solving the energy crisis is fundamental to this, whatever tough choices and challenges it brings. Read more >