LIVING PLANET REPORT
Since 1998, WWF’s Living Planet Report has been tracking the state of nature globally.
We’re all connected
This year’s edition is the most comprehensive finding to date and provides a platform for the best science, cutting-edge research and diverse voices on the impact of humans on the health of our Earth. More than 50 experts from academia, policy, international development and conservation organisations have contributed. WWF’s Living Planet Report 2022 shows the scale of the challenge – and highlights what we can do, both here in Australia and around the world, to change the way we live. The future of the planet is in our hands.
Key findings from WWF’s Living Planet Report 2022 include:
- Global wildlife populations fell by 69%, on average, between 1970 and 2018.
- Australia continues to have the most mammal extinctions in the world. The report tells a disturbing story of continual decline of more than 1,100 wildlife populations in Australia due to pressures from climate change, habitat destruction and introduced predators.
- Populations of sharks and rays have dropped by 71% worldwide over the last 50 years due to fishing practices.There has been a 64% reduction in Australian sea lion pups born each year in South and Western Australia.
- The Pookila, formally known as the New Holland mouse has disappeared from the Great Otway National Park in Victoria.
- Ruddy turnstones, a migratory shorebird, have not been seen in George Town, Tasmania, since June 2019.
- Combined koala populations have plummeted by 50% over 20 years in Queensland, New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory.
- Globally, landuse change is still the biggest current threat to nature, destroying or fragmenting the natural habitats of many plant and animal species on land, in freshwater and in our oceans.
- If we cannot limit global warming to 1.5°C, climate change will likely become the dominant cause of biodiversity loss in the coming decades.
- The report details the importance of Indigenous leadership as key to taking care of our living planet. Associate Professor Bradley Moggridge, a proud Murri from the Kamilaroi Nation, a researcher in Indigenous Water Science, and a WWF-Australia Governor, contributed to the report, detailing the state of Indigenous land and water knowledge in Australia. He advised that Indigenous research methodologies continue to be limited due to government inaction and that we must bridge the gap to benefit all Australians.
- There is still time to act to reverse biodiversity loss and secure a nature-positive world by 2030, but urgency is needed.
- Australia must set strong nature laws, become a world leader in forest protection and climate action, and respect and acknowledge the stewardship of Indigenous Australians to care for Country. With the right conservation effort, commitment, investment and expertise, wildlife and wild places can be brought back from the brink.
The Living Planet Report includes the latest findings measured by the Living Planet Index, tracking 32,000 populations of 5,230 mammals, birds, amphibians, reptiles and fish from 1970-2018. This includes more than 1,100 populations in Australia.
Australia's extinction crisis
1,800 of our Aussie animals and plants are at risk of extinction. Many of our iconic wildlife, including the east coast koala, Carnaby’s black cockatoo and northern quoll, are at risk of disappearing forever. Help turn the tide on Australia’s extinction crisis by signing the petition to our leaders calling for stronger protection for our wildlife and the places they call home.
Toward a resilient future
If humans can change the planet so profoundly, then it’s also in our power to put things right. That will require new ways of thinking, smarter production methods, wiser consumption and new finance and governance systems. WWF’s Living Planet Report provides possible solutions – including the fundamental changes required in the global food, energy and finance systems to meet the needs of current and future generations.
Did you know?
Over the last 100 years, humans have played an important role in changing the Earth's ecosystems. To mark this new era in Earth's history, experts introduced the 'Anthropocene', the Age of Humans.