There has been a recent increase in today’s rate of extinctions. Astonishing amounts of animals and plants are considered critically endangered and on the edge of extinction. Therefore, the extinction crisis is so worrying and why we need to do more to conserve endangered species.


Extinctions are a natural process. They would happen with or without humans being involved. But the current extinction crisis is alarmingly unique. Research shows that extinctions are happening quicker now than ever before and the causes of the crisis can blamed on one species: human beings. This is the problem that we need to address.


The conservation of endangered species is important, as all living things are part of a balanced network called the eco system. If one species rapidly becomes endangered or extinct, it can damage the health of the nearby environment and have disastrous effects on all other members of the system, including humans. We need healthy forests, rivers, oceans to provide us with clean air, water and land needed to survive and develop. Diversity in animals and plants is also vital for us humans as we are reliant on the resources they provide. This leaves us to ask ourselves: what if a plant that can be used in cure of an illness becomes extinct? It’s these consequences we humans are often blind to.


Unfortunatelymore and more animals are pushed onto the endangered list because of human-induced factors like over hunting, loss of habitat, climate change and pollution. Hunting is a major threat for the Indonesian Rhino as only 60 remain in the wild. In the case of the polar bears, climate change is melting away their homes and taking away the bears food with it. Pandas in China have considerably reduced in number due to people overharvesting their main food source.  And for marine turtles pollution and waste on coastal areas and in the oceans make it challenging for them to nest and survive, drastically reducing their numbers to only 8000 turtles remaining. Marine turtles have peacefully inhabited our oceans for over 150 million years, outliving most creatures from the late Jurassic times and playing a vital role in keeping the oceans healthy. But now they critically endangered because we have filled our oceans with plastic.


It is humans that are causing this crisis, so we must not hesitate in our efforts to solve it. Organisations like WWF and the ICUN have helped many animals escape the verge of extinction and do necessary work toward keeping our ecosystems healthy and sustainable. It is important that we not only support these organisations but also do our best to live more environmentally friendly. We cannot afford to fail in solving this crisis, as not only will thousands of innocent species have to pay the price, but so will we.


Sanjna Suthar