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Nearly 30% of 138,000 assessed species are facing extinction, group warns

Nearly 30% of 138,000 assessed species are facing extinction, group warns

Posted: Sep 4, 2021 9:01 PM
Updated: Sep 4, 2021 9:01 PM

A top international conservation agency warned that 28% of the 138,374 species identified on its "survival watchlist" as being under threat have now been moved to the more dangerous "red list" -- meaning they are at high risk of extinction.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) reported during its annual Red List update on Saturday in Marseille, France, that despite global improvement at the species level, the number of species that are at high risk continues to grow.

The organization said that many regional tuna stocks remain severely depleted. For example, yellowfin tuna continues to be overfished in the Indian Ocean.

Their update also included a reassessment of the world's shark and ray species, which shows that 37% of those species are now facing extinction. All of the threatened shark and ray species are overfished, IUCN reported, with 31% of them further affected by loss and degradation of habitat and 10% also affected by climate change.

"We note striking similarities between the shark and ray statistics and recent estimates for plants: about 2 in 5 are threatened with extinction, and habitat loss and degradation present more immediate threats than climate change," said Dr. Eimear Nic Lughadha, a conservation scientist at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.

Additionally, the Komodo dragon, the world's largest lizard, is now considered endangered due to a significant habitat loss from ongoing human activities and climate change, IUCN reported.

"The idea that these prehistoric animals have moved one step closer to extinction due in part to climate change is terrifying -- and a further clarion call for nature to be placed at the heart of all decision making on the eve of the COP26 in Glasgow," said Dr. Andrew Terry, conservation director at the Zoological Society of London.

COP26, a United Nations climate change conference, will take place in November. Alok Sharma, the president of COP26, has previously said he wants the climate talks this year to reach agreement on a number of key targets, including putting an end date on the use of coal, a commitment to make all new car sales zero emissions within the next 14 to 19 years, stopping deforestation by the end of the decade and greater reductions of methane emissions.

There is reason for hope for at-risk species: Of the seven most commercially fished tuna species that were reassessed, four of them are showing signs that they're starting to recover after countries enforced more sustainable fishing quotas and are successfully combating illegal fishing, IUCN said.

The four tuna species include the Atlantic bluefin tuna, which moved from "endangered" to "least concern," the Southern bluefin tuna, which moved from "critically endangered" to "endangered," the albacore and yellowfin tuna, both of which moved from "near threatened" to "least concern."

"These Red List assessments are proof that sustainable fisheries approaches work, with enormous long-term benefits for livelihoods and biodiversity. We need to continue enforcing sustainable fishing quotas and cracking down on illegal fishing," said Bruce B. Collette, chair of the IUCN SSC Tuna and Billfish Specialist Group.

"Tuna species migrate across thousands of kilometres, so coordinating their management globally is also key," Collette said.

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Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 497790

Reported Deaths: 9917
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34102530
DeSoto31839398
Hinds31837622
Jackson24314377
Rankin21881388
Lee15427234
Madison14525279
Jones13772241
Forrest13412250
Lauderdale11937314
Lowndes10934185
Lamar10470135
Pearl River9431237
Lafayette8454138
Hancock7697126
Washington7365156
Oktibbeha7111129
Monroe6727174
Warren6642176
Pontotoc6609101
Neshoba6606205
Panola6460131
Marshall6386132
Bolivar6266145
Union596094
Pike5784152
Alcorn5633101
Lincoln5417134
George491879
Scott470998
Tippah465381
Prentiss464181
Leflore4627143
Itawamba4596104
Adams4570119
Tate4546109
Copiah445191
Simpson4421116
Wayne438572
Yazoo438586
Covington427394
Marion4216107
Sunflower4215104
Coahoma4115104
Leake407787
Newton380879
Grenada3692108
Stone358464
Tishomingo356391
Attala330289
Jasper328265
Winston313191
Clay306375
Chickasaw296767
Clarke290694
Calhoun277945
Holmes266987
Smith262550
Yalobusha232647
Tallahatchie225251
Walthall217763
Greene215548
Lawrence211140
Perry204755
Amite203954
Webster201645
Noxubee185340
Montgomery179056
Jefferson Davis170642
Carroll167438
Tunica158639
Benton147438
Kemper141241
Choctaw133026
Claiborne131237
Humphreys129038
Franklin119128
Quitman106227
Wilkinson104539
Jefferson94234
Sharkey64020
Issaquena1937
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 813481

Reported Deaths: 15179
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1139971910
Mobile722271323
Madison51970686
Shelby37279341
Baldwin37069540
Tuscaloosa34934599
Montgomery33953725
Lee23142240
Calhoun22142470
Morgan20639372
Etowah19758496
Marshall18245300
Houston17302405
St. Clair15912337
Cullman15306290
Limestone15202198
Elmore15075284
Lauderdale14143294
Talladega13715272
DeKalb12569259
Walker11085366
Blount10094174
Autauga9893146
Jackson9789180
Coffee9182189
Dale8859181
Colbert8789200
Tallapoosa7044195
Escambia6732127
Covington6682179
Chilton6587160
Russell625958
Franklin5930105
Chambers5559142
Marion4955126
Dallas4882199
Clarke472782
Pike4719105
Geneva4564126
Winston4473101
Lawrence4264117
Bibb421686
Barbour355475
Marengo334089
Monroe330262
Randolph327063
Butler324794
Pickens313882
Henry310965
Hale309187
Cherokee299957
Fayette290679
Washington250951
Cleburne246958
Crenshaw243575
Clay240367
Macon230562
Lamar215846
Conecuh185652
Coosa178538
Lowndes173761
Wilcox167438
Bullock151744
Perry138040
Sumter131038
Greene125544
Choctaw86927
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A cold front passing through our area overnight will bring into our area some of the coolest temperatures of the season so far. We will see most of the highs this weekend only in the upper 60s to lower 70s. While overnight lows will drop off down into the 40s Saturday night.
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