One Fifth of All Species May Go Extinct Because of Global Warming


There is widespread agreement among scientists that the Earth's climate has warmed in recent years and that it will get warmer. While it has become clear that the global warming is real, it has not been clear what climate change will mean to the biological world. Will plants and animals do better or worse in a warmer world? Scientists have been working hard to answer this question and the picture is becoming clearer. It turns out that plants and animals are acutely sensitive to climate change. A flurry of scientific papers in the last few years has shown that there have already been dramatic changes in the biosphere in response to an increase in global temperature. What do the next fifty years have in store for the living world as the climate continues to heat up?

We spoke with Stuart Pimm about the contribution of climate change to the extinction crisis that is occurring throughout the world.

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