Climate change could wipe out half the bird species, according to a chilling new assessment of the effect of global warming on life. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) — the same organization that maintains the Red List of Threatened Species — performed the study.
According to a report in New Scientist last week, the IUCN now believes that the Red List is too conservative because it hadn’t taken into account the effects of climate change. IUCN’s Wendy Foden explained:
“When the Red List was invented, it was long before anyone worried about climate change.”
Birds face far more challenges than their current IUCN status suggests. Between a quarter to a half of all of the approximately 10,000 species may be at risk of extinction if climate change is allowed to proceed unchecked.
Foden stressed that a great many of the bird species at risk aren’t even currently classified as threatened. She said that 17 to 41 percent of the vulnerable birds are currently listed as safe species on the so-called Red List.
Oh no - we must do something about this