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Perspective - Climate

HISTORICAL CONTEXT - CLIMATE CHANGE

pile of books, feather and ink

Repetitive orchestrated confusion raised by few dissident scientists funded by corporations…

There are many reasons for inaction in America, the most important one is the repetitive orchestrated confusion raised by few dissident scientists funded by corporations who have cast doubt on all the contemporary challenges we have faced as a nation, by minimizing the existence and magnitude of the various environmental problems including Ozone Depletion,Chemicals and Pesticides, Species Extinction and now Global Warming and Climate Change.

The modus operandi of the corporations has been consistently aggressive and deceptive by impugning the scientific credibility and professional integrity of scientists like Rachael L.Carson, Theo Colborn, Paul R.Ehrlich, James Hansen and Peter Wadhams that have raised concerns about the environmental hazards to our planet and humanity.

Given this history the responsibility falls on us the citizens of America to stop these insane repetitive polices that are not based on scientific evidence.

Engage to Change " Our Status Quo"

Illustration of puzzle pieces forming a light bulb, which connects people

Demand Fossil Fuel Divestment and Funding to mitigate CO2 emissions…

  1. Demand Fossil Fuel Divestment and Funding to mitigate CO2 emissions and Climate Change.
  2. Demand to adopt the ban of pesticides as initiated by European Countries, which is based on solid scientific evidence.
  3. Demand a halt to the proposed revisions that would change the way the agencies (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Marine Fisheries Service) implement the Endangered Species Act – actions that could lead to the destruction of essential habitat and otherwise preventable species extinctions.

Benchmarking & Best Practices

The Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI ) compares where countries actually are…

In 2017, the methodology of the Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI ) was revised to fully incorporate the 2015 Paris Agreement, a milestone in inter- national climate negotiations with the goal to limit global warming to well below 2°C or even to 1.5°C.

Since then, the CCPI includes an assessment of the well-below 2°C compatibility of countries’ current performances and their own targets (as formulated in their Nationally Determined Contributions, or NDCs).

Within the quantitative index cate- gories – “GHG Emissions”, “Renewable Energy” and “Energy Use” – current performance and the respective 2030 target are evaluated in relation to their country-specific well- below-2°C pathway. For the well-below-2°C pathways, ambitious benchmarks are set for each category, guided by the long-term goals of the Paris Agreement.

The three benchmarks are: nearly zero GHG emissions (taking into account country-specific pathways, which give develop- ing countries more time to reach this goal); 100% energy from renewable sources; and keeping to today’s average global energy use per capita levels and not increasing beyond.

The CCPI compares where countries actually are today with where they should be to meet the ambitious benchmarks. Following a similar logic, the CCPI evaluates the countries’ own 2030 targets by comparing these to the same benchmarks.

CCPI - Rankings

Climate Change Performance Index (CCPI) compares 57 countries and EU…

On the basis of standardised criteria, the CCPI currently evaluates and compares the climate protection perfor- mance of 57 countries and of the European Union (EU), which are together responsible for more than 90% of global greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. The last country to be added was Chile for the CCPI 2020.

The CCPI assesses countries’ performance in four categories:“GHG Emissions” (40% of overall score), “Renewable Energy” (20% of overall score), “Energy Use” (20% of overall score) and “Climate Policy” (20% of overall score).

The table shows the overall ranking and indicates how the countries perform in the different index categories.

Climate Change Performance Index – U.S. ranks at the very bottom #61.

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Climate Policy - Rankings

U.S. ranks last in Climate Policy…

The table provides detailed information on the performance of all 57 countries and the EU in the two indicators defining the Climate Policy category

Five G20 countries rank under high performers in this year’s Climate Policy rating with France now scoring only medium. As of last year nine of the G20 countries are rated low or very low for their performance in the Climate Policy category. South Africa was able to improve to a medium rating, while Saudi Arabia joins the low performers

Ten EU countries rank under high performers in this year’s Climate Policy rating, with five EU countries lead- ing the ranking (excluding the UK). Bulgaria and Hungary are the worst performing EU countries, both with an overall very low rating in the Climate Policy category.

The EU improves by eight ranks in the Climate Policy rating and is rated high especially for its international climate policy.

Climate Policy – U.S. ranks at the very bottom #61.

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Climate Change

CLIMATE CHANGE - AN EXISTENTIAL CRISIS

Illustration of earth

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) unequivocally concludes that human activities are affecting  global warming …

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) 2021 report states “It is unequivocal that human influence has warmed the atmosphere, ocean and land. Widespread and rapid changes in the atmosphere, ocean, cryosphere and biosphere have occurred 

Each of the last four decades has been successively warmer than any decade that preceded it since 1850. Global surface temperature in the first two decades of the 21st century (2001-2020) was 0.99 [0.84- 1.10] °C higher than 1850-19009.

Global surface temperature was 1.09 [0.95 to 1.20] °C higher in 2011– 2020 than 1850–1900, with larger increases over land (1.59 [1.34 to 1.83] °C) than over the ocean (0.88 [0.68 to 1.01] °C).

The estimated increase in global surface temperature  is principally due to further warming since 2003–2012 (+0.19 [0.16 to 0.22] °C).”

EACH COUNTRY'S SHARE OF CO2

Developed countries and major emerging economy nations lead in total carbon dioxide emissions

The world’s countries emit vastly different amounts of heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere. The picture that emerges from these figures is one where—in general— developed countries and major emerging economy nations lead in total carbon dioxide emissions.

Developed nations typically have high carbon dioxide emissions per capita, while some developing countries lead in the growth rate of carbon dioxide emissions.

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EVIDENCE OF CLIMATE CHANGE - TEMP & CO2

NASA Vital Signs of the Plant states…

Earth-orbiting satellites and other technological advances have enabled scientists to see the big picture, collecting many different types of information about our planet and its climate on a global scale. This body of data, collected over many years, reveals the signals of a changing climate.

NASA Vital Signs of the Plant states that the planet’s average surface temperature has risen about 2.12 degrees Fahrenheit (1.18 degrees Celsius) since the late 19th century, a change driven largely by increased carbon dioxide emissions into the atmosphere and other human activities. 

Most of the warming occurred in the past 40 years, with the seven most recent years being the warmest. The years 2016 and 2020 are tied for the warmest year on record

Carbon dioxide (CO2) is an important heat-trapping (greenhouse) gas, which is released through human activities such as deforestation and burning fossil fuels, as well as natural processes such as respiration and volcanic eruptions. 

Over the past 171 years, human activities have raised atmospheric concentrations of CO2 by 48% above pre-industrial levels starting in 1850. This is more than what had happened naturally over a 20,000 year period (from the Last Glacial Maximum to 1850, from 185 ppm to 280 ppm).

TEMPERATURE INCREASE : 1880-PRESENT

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C02 INCREASE : 2005-PRESENT

EVIDENCE OF CLIMATE CHANGE- ICE SHEETS & SEA LEVEL

Global sea level rose about 8 inches (20 centimeters) in the last century…

Sea level rise is caused primarily by two factors related to global warming: the added water from melting ice sheets and glaciers and the expansion of seawater as it warms.

Global sea level rose about 8 inches (20 centimeters) in the last century. The rate in the last two decades, however, is nearly double that of the last century and accelerating slightly every year.

Arctic sea ice reaches its minimum each September. September Arctic sea ice is now declining at a rate of 13.1 percent per decade, relative to the 1981 to 2010 average. The graph above shows the average monthly Arctic sea ice extent each September since 1979, derived from satellite observations. The 2012 extent is the lowest in the satellite record.

The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass. Data from NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment show Greenland lost an average of 279 billion tons of ice per year between 1993 and 2019, while Antarctica lost about 148 billion tons of ice per year.

ARCTIC SEA ICE DECREASE:1981-PRESENT

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SEA LEVEL INCREASE : 1993-PRESENT

OIL & GAS LOBBYISTS - IMPEDING SCIENCE

Five Largest companies have invested over $1Billion following the Paris Agreement

The five largest publicly-traded oil and gas majors (ExxonMobil, Royal Dutch Shell, Chevron, BP and Total) have invested over $1Billion of shareholder funds in the three years following the Paris Agreement on misleading climate-related branding and lobbying.

These efforts are overwhelmingly in conflict with the goals of this landmark global climate accord and designed to maintain the social and legal license to operate and expand fossil fuel operations.

CORPORATE - CLIMATE LOBBYING LANDSCAPE

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OIL FIRMS SPEND MILLIONS ON CLIMATE LOBBYING

Perspective - Pesticides

HISTOTICAL CONTEXT - PESTICIDES

pile of books, feather and ink

“We have become unwitting guinea pigs in our own vast experiment with synthetic chemicals…”

Some might find irony in the prospect that humans in their restless quest for dominance over nature may be inadvertently undermining their own ability to reproduce or to learn and think.They may see poetic justice in the possibility that we have become unwitting guinea pigs in our own vast experiment with synthetic chemicals.”Theo Colborn, “Our Stolen Future.

 

One of the unintended consequences of the modern chemical revolution has been world-wide dispersal of contaminants. No ecosystem has been left untouched.

No human has been born since the middle of the 20th century without some exposure, in the womb, to hormonally-active synthetic compounds creating endocrine disruptions in all living organisms including humans.

Much of the dispersal of the contaminants is by atmospheric or oceanic currents.The result is an uncontrolled, largely unmonitored experiment playing out at a global scale.

One of the unfortunate aspects of the public debate about endocrine disruption has been a repeating pattern of distortion of scientific findings by various representatives of chemical interests.

BENCHMARKING & BEST PRACTICES

Comparing Europe (1), Canada (2), and US (Last) in pesticide use

Pesticide Action Network (PAN) has been one of the key driving forces…

Pesticide Action Network (PAN) has been one of the key driving forces among non- governmental organizations (NGOs) for improving pesticide and crop protection policies towards safer, socially just, environmentally sustainable and economically viable pest management systems

The International Code of Conduct on the Distribution and Use of Pesticides was adopted by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) to respond to the growing evidence of risks and harm associated with the use of pesticides in 1985.

The latest Guidelines on Highly Hazardous Pesticides, adopted in is:

Highly Hazardous Pesticides means pesticides that are acknowledged to present particularly high levels of acute or chronic hazards to health or environment according to internationally accepted classification systems such as WHO or GHS or their listing in relevant binding international agreements or conventions. In addition, pesticides that appear to cause severe or irreversible harm to health or the environment under conditions of use in a country may be considered to be and treated as highly hazardous.”

BANNED PESTICIDES - U.S VS EU

In U.S. use of pesticides continues unabated…

 While the European Union has banned or restricted 246 pesticides starting in 2005, many of these same pesticides are widely used in the United States.
PDF Study: Greenpeace

European Union nations have banned 5 Pesticide groups starting in 2005 and blacklisted 209 pesticides as of 2016.

Insecticides Banned:

 Neonicotinoids, or “neonics,”are the main suspect in the mysterious mass disappearance of entire bee colonies and work as nerve agents on the bees. In 2013, EU voted to ban three of the most common but are used in U.S.: imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam.

Herbicides Banned:

Paraquat,apesticidelinkedto Parkinson’s disease, is banned in EU but not the U.S. It’s highly toxic and kills weeds on contact.

 Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, will soon to be banned in the Netherlands.

Atrazine is the pesticide most commonly found in 90 percent of American drinking water. The EU banned it in 2004 but EPA approved its use in U.S. The weed killer is an endocrine disrupter, affects the immune system and is linked to birth defects.

 In Canada as of 2010, 171 municipalities including the entire provinces of Quebec and Ontario have now placed restrictions on the cosmetic use of synthetic lawn pesticides as a result of health and environmental concerns. Over 250 products are banned for sale and more than 95 pesticide ingredients are banned for cosmetic uses.

In U.S. use of pesticides continues unabated.

 
Pesticides the EU banned

EU's BANNED PESTICIDES EXPORTED TO OTHER COUNTRIES

EU allows agrochemical to sell substances deemed too dangerous for European agriculture to others…

 Public Eye and Unearthed reveal for the first time the extent to which the European Union (EU) allows the export of certain pesticides even though it bans their use on its own fields.

The hypocrisy of allowing agrochemical companies to flood low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) with substances deemed too dangerous for European agriculture. The Basel-based giant Syngenta plays a leading role.

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EU's BANNED PESTICIDES ACTIVE INGREDIENTS

Syngenta’s best-selling pesticide, paraquat, is so dangerous that just one sip can be lethal…

 Syngenta’s best-selling pesticide, paraquat, is so dangerous that just one sip can be lethal. Chronic exposure, even at low doses, can cause Parkinson’s disease. The deadly pesticide was first marketed in 1962, but has been banned in the European Union (EU) since 2007, as well as in Switzerland since 1989, on the grounds that it is too dangerous for European farmers even when wearing protective equipment.

Despite this, Syngenta continues to manufacture the herbicide at its plant in Huddersfield, UK, and export it to countries in South America, Asia and Africa, where it causes thousands of poisonings every year.

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Pesticides in U.S

PESTICIDES & ENDOCRINE DISRUPTION

All chemically-mediated message systems, are now known to be vulnerable to endocrine disruptors…

Endocrine disruption burst onto the public and policy scene in the mid-1990s, propelled by a growing body of science and then galvanized by the publication of Our Stolen Future.

All chemically-mediated message systems, are now known to be vulnerable to endocrine disruptors. The study of endocrine disruption began with a focus on compounds capable of mimicking or interfering with estrogen. Now science has revealed disruptors for almost every hormone system that has been studied. This includes other sex steroid hormones, like testosterone and progesterone, as well as thyroid and retinoids.

Normal brain development is heavily influenced by a host of hormonal signalling systems. Thyroid hormones play a major role. The sex steroids (testosterone, estrogen, etc.) contribute to, among other things, sexual differentiate of brain centers, and thereby, to the development of sexual identity and sexual behaviors.Dependent upon natural hormone signals, brain development is therefore vulnerable to endocrine disruption.

A rapidly increasing body of scientific research is revealing mechanisms of action, demonstrating impacts of disrupted development, and exploring links between intelligence, behavior and contamination experienced in the womb.

U.S. TOTAL PESTICIDE USE

In U.S. each year, an estimated 1.1 billion pounds of pesticides are applied to U.S. farms, forests, lawns and golf courses…

In the United States, each year, an estimated 1.1 billion pounds of pesticides are applied to U.S. farms, forests, lawns and golf courses.

More than 20,000 pesticides are currently on the market and over 80,000 synthetic chemicals are in use. Only about 2% have been tested for carcinogenicity to toxicity. 

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Pesticide use US chart

U.S. LAWN PESTICIDE USE

Of 30 commonly used lawn pesticides 13 are linked with birth defects…

Of 30 commonly used lawn pesticides 13 are probable or possible carcinogens, 13 are linked with birth defects, 21 with reproductive effects, 15 with neurotoxicity, 26 with liver or kidney damage, 27 are sensitizers and/or irritants, and 11 have the potential to disrupt the endocrine hormonal system.

www.beyondpesticides.org
PDF Study: Pesticide Facts
PDF Study: Health Effects
PDF Study: Environment Effects

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Relationship between pesticides

U.S. CITIZENS - PESTICIDES IN BODY

CDC tested for 212 chemicals, including 44 pesticides and found most of them in over 85 percent of Americans tested…

Scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) measure pesticides and other chemicals in the bodies of Americans every few years.

In the most recent study updated 2019, CDC tested for 212 chemicals, including 44 pesticides and found most of them in over 85 percent of Americans tested, even though some chemicals such as DDT have not been widely used here since 1972.
www.cdc.gov
PDF Study: CDC 1
PDF Study: CDC 2

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Facts from the CDC about testing pesticides

INSECTICIDES, HERBICIDES & FUMIGANTS

Main Groups of Insecticides, Pesticides and Fumigants…

Pesticides are an enormous prop of chemicals designed to kill unwanted insects ( Insecticides), weeds ( Herbicides), nematocides (Fumigants), rodents ( Rodenticides), fungi (Fungicides), (Repellents) and, microorganisms (Disinfectants).

The problem is, many of the chemicals used to kill pests also endanger human health.

Insecticides- Neonicotinoids; Carbamates/Organophosphates; Organochlorine; Pyrethoids/Pyrethrins/Piperonyls.
Herbicides- Chlorophenoxy Herbicides; Glycophosate; Paraquat/ Diquat;
Trizine( Atrazine)
Fumigants- Organochlorine ( 1,3-D)

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Perspective - Extinction

HISTORICAL CONTEXT - SPECIES EXTINCTION

pile of books, feather and ink

Numbers of extinctions are likely to snowball in the coming decades as ecosystems unravel…

Species are critical for a healthy planet, but a growing human population is placing them under enormous pressure. Habitat destruction, invasive species, overexploitation, illegal wildlife trade, pollution and climate change are threatening the survival of species worldwide.
www.iucn.org
PDF Study: UN Goals“

Our planet is now in the midst of its sixth mass extinction of plants and animals. Unlike past mass extinctions, caused by events like asteroid strikes, volcanic eruptions, and natural climate shifts, the current crisis is almost entirely caused by us — humans. Today we are seeing an extraordinary high rate of extinctions. Our planet now faces a global extinction crisis never witnessed by humankind.

Scientists predict that more than 1 million species are on track for extinction in the coming decades.Because the rate of change in our biosphere is increasing, and because every species’ extinction potentially leads to the extinction of others bound to that species in a complex ecological web, numbers of extinctions are likely to snowball in the coming decades as ecosystems unravel.

BENCHMARKING & BEST PRACTICES

The IUCN Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas is the first global standard…

The IUCN Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas is the first global standard of best practice for area-based conservation. It is a programme of certification for protected and conserved areas – national parks, natural World Heritage sites, community conserved areas, nature reserves and so on – that are effectively managed and fairly governed.

59 sites in 16 countries

By giving recognition to well-managed and well-governed protected and conserved areas, the IUCN Green List of Protected and Conserved Areas aims to increase the number of natural areas delivering long-lasting conservation results for people and nature.

IUCN ENDANGERED SPECIES RED LIST

Currently there are more than 96,951 species on The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List…

The most accurate census, conducted by the Hawaii’s University in 2018, estimates that a total of 8.7 million species live on the planet. To date, a total of 1.8 million species have been identified and described : Mammals 5,500, Birds 10,000, Amphibians 8,001, Reptiles 10,000 and Insects 925,000.

Species assessments are conducted following a standardized process using the rigorous IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria, ensuring the highest standards of scientific documentation, information management, expert review, and justification.

There are eight IUCN Red List Categories based on criteria linked to population trend, size and structure, and geographic range. Species listed as Critically Endangered, Endangered or Vulnerable are collectively described as threatened.

More than 77,300 species have been assessed on The IUCN Red List. The results are disturbing with several species groups facing a severe threat of extinction.

PDF Study: Red List

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TOP 10 U.S. ENDANGERED SPECIES - POLAR BEARS

Two-thirds of the world’s polar bears could be extinct by 2050…

With the world population hitting 7 billion, the Center for Biological Diversity is marking this milestone by releasing a list of species in the United States facing extinction caused by the growing human population.

The 10 species represent a range of geography, as well as species diversity — but all are critically threatened by the effects of human population. Some, like the Florida panther and Mississippi gopher frog, are rapidly losing habitat as the human population expands.

Others are seeing their habitat dangerously altered — like the small flowering sandplain gerardia in New England — or, like the bluefin tuna, are buckling under the weight of massive overfishing. Still others, like the polar bear, are facing extinction because of fossil fuels driving catastrophic global warming.

Of greatest concern is the  brunt of the global climate crisis that is severely impacting the polar bear’s. Two-thirds of the world’s polar bears could be extinct by 2050 if greenhouse gas-fueled global warming keeps melting their Arctic sea-ice habitat.

TOP 10 U.S. ENDANGERED SPECIES - ATLANTIC BLUEFIN TUNA

Atlantic bluefin tuna has declined by more than 80 percent since 1970 due to over harvesting…

As the human population grows and the rich countries continue to consume resources at voracious rates, we are crowding out, poisoning and eating all other species into extinction.

Marine fish provide 15 percent of all animal protein consumed by human beings. Fisheries management, however, has been outpaced by our population growth, causing global fisheries to collapse under the unsustainable pressure.

A 2009 assessment found that 80 percent of global fish stocks are either overly and fully exploited or have collapsed. Though a catch reduction of 20-50 percent is needed to make global fisheries sustainable, the demand for fish is expected to increase by 35 million tons by 2030.

Of greatest concern is the western Atlantic bluefin tuna that spawns in the Gulf of Mexico and has declined by more than 80 percent since 1970 due to overharvesting. Prized as a sushi fish around the world, it has become more valuable as it has become rare. One fish in 2011 sold for $396,000. The large, warm-blooded bluefin tuna is a common, upscale sushi menu item and has been severely overfished. The Atlantic bluefin, like so many other ocean species, is threatened by humans’ ravenous appetites: Demand far exceeds sustainable fishing levels.

Species Extinctions

BIODIVERSITY IN ECOSYSTEMS

Silhouettes of various animals walking the globe with the caption "Protect endangered species. They live here too"

“Only if we understand, can we care. Only if we care, we will help. Only if we help, we shall be saved…”- Jane Goodall, “Jane Goodall: 40 Years at Gombe…

Greater biodiversity in ecosystems, species, and individuals leads to greater stability. For example, species with high genetic diversity and many populations that are adapted to a wide variety of conditions are more likely to be able to weather disturbances, disease, and climate change.

Greater biodiversity also enriches us with more varieties of foods and medicines. Current estimates of global species diversity vary between 2 million and 100 million species, with a popular estimate of somewhere near 13 to 14 million. The majority of them are arthropods. But very little is known about most species.

Only roughly 1.5 million species have been described, and only 40,000 to 50,000 species have had their conservation status assessed. Roughly a third of these are believed to be at some risk of extinction. 

TOP 10 MOST ENDANGERED ANIMALS - ELEPHANTS

Elephants will be extinct in the wild in less than 10 years…

A species is classified as endangered when its population has declined between 50 and 70 percent and as when its population is restricted to less than 250 mature individuals.

Elephants will be extinct in the wild in less than 10 years, unless we take action Now.

  • In 1900, an estimated 10 Million Elephants roamed freely in Africa. Today, there are fewer than 400,000 African Elephants in the wild.
  • In Africa, approximately 96 elephants are killed every day for their ivory – that’s one every 15 minutes.
  • An estimated 35,000 African elephants were killed every year from 2010 to 2013.
  • Due to human/elephant conflicts, Asian elephants are critically endangered with only 48,000 left in the wild.
  • The United States is the world’s second largest market for ivory; traded through auction houses, antique shops, shops in large cities, and online sales.
  • Massachusetts is the fourth largest ivory trade market in the United States.
  • Countries in Asia remain the biggest market for ivory where it is viewed as a status symbol.

TOP 10 MOST ENDANGERED ANIMALS - ORANGUTANS

Bornean and Sumatran Orangutans have experienced sharp population declines…

Both species the Bornean and Sumatran Orangutans have experienced sharp population declines. A century ago there were probably more than 230,000 orangutans in total, but the Bornean orangutan is now estimated at about 104,700 based on updated geographic range (Endangered) and the Sumatran about 7,500 (Critically Endangered).

The destruction and degradation of the tropical rain forest, particularly lowland forest, in Borneo and Sumatra is the main reason orangutans are threatened with extinction.

Palm oil, an ingredient found in many everyday food and cosmetic products, is contributing to the rapid deforestation in Sumatra. Orangutan habitat in Sumatra and Borneo is being cleared at an alarming rate for conversion to oil palm plantations.

TOP 10 MOST ENDANGERED ANIMALS - JAVAN RHINOCEROS

Javan rhinos are currently critically endangered making it one of the most threatened large mammal species on Earth…

Only 67 Javan rhinos are currently estimated to remain in the world, making this critically endangered rhino species one of the most threatened large mammal species on Earth. They’re confined to one park on the extreme southwestern tip of the Indonesian island of Java

 Javan rhinos are currently critically endangered making it one of the most threatened large mammal species on Earth.

However all three subspecies of Rhinocerous are endangered; Three species of rhino—black, Javan, and Sumatran—are critically endangered. Today, a small population of Javan rhinos is found in only one national park on the northern tip of the Indonesian island of Java. A mainland subspecies of the Javan rhino was declared extinct in Vietnam in 2011.

TOP 10 MOST ENDANGERED ANIMALS - LEATHERBACK SEA TURTLES

Extensive egg collection and bycatch in fishing gear are the primary causes of these declines… 

Leatherback turtles are named for their shell, which is leather-like rather than hard, like other turtles. They are the largest sea turtle species and also one of the most migratory, crossing both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

Leatherbacks occur in the Atlantic, Pacific, and Indian Oceans. They occupy U.S. waters in the West Pacific, East Pacific, and Northwest Atlantic. Pacific leatherback turtle nesting grounds are located in tropical latitudes in the eastern and western Pacific around the world.

NOAA Fisheries designated all leatherback turtle populations as endangered under the Endangered Species Act in 1970.