World's Vertebrate Population Dropped by an Average of 60 Percent since 1970, WWF Says - NBC New York
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World's Vertebrate Population Dropped by an Average of 60 Percent since 1970, WWF Says

"There cannot be a healthy, happy and prosperous future for people on a planet ... stripped of biodiversity, the web of life that sustains us all"

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    World's Vertebrate Population Dropped by an Average of 60 Percent since 1970, WWF Says
    Getty Images, File

    The world's vertebrate population has dropped by an average of 60 percent since 1970, according to a new report from the conservation group WWF.

    NBC News reported that the decline was most stark in South and Central America, where the population of vertebrates has dropped nearly 90 percent, with freshwater species falling nearly as much over the same period.

    "There cannot be a healthy, happy and prosperous future for people on a planet with a destabilized climate, depleted oceans and rivers, degraded land and empty forests, all stripped of biodiversity, the web of life that sustains us all," WWF Director General Marco Lambertin wrote in the report.

    It also detailed how humans have hurt the health of the planet, including that 90 percent of the world's seabirds are estimated to have plastic in their stomachs, up from 5 percent six decades ago.