The List of Extinct Species is Growing: We’re Going to Be Next

Kimberly Rendon '20, Opinions Editor

America, we have a dilemma. This isn’t new, but we are speeding up the extinction of millions of species including our own. Scientists have already estimated that the world will heat to 4 degrees Celsius by 2100. Remember the Most Important Number You Have Never Heard Of?

According to Scientist, “Since 1500, at least 680 species have blinked out of existence, including the Pinta giant tortoise of the Galápagos Islands and the Guam flying fox.” We know some species are bound to go extinct naturally, but this heartbreaking loss isn’t natural. Us humans are bringing this planet to its breaking point by mistreating it. Every day, we are damaging the earth with acts that may seem little, but have a big effect. We are constantly overusing plastics which leads to ocean pollution, which leads to harming innocent marine life. Global warming, which is caused by us overusing fossil fuels, is causing Earth’s temperature to rise at an alarming rate.

Global warming has already started to impact us with record-breaking summers and massive snowstorms lasting longer than normal. All of these issues are destroying the homes of animals as well as our own. If we continue to ignore this, sea levels will continue to rise. Soon places like California, Florida, and many more will be flooded with water, destroying people’s homes and the soil.

According to NRDC, “In short we need to protect nature—or nature is going to stop protecting us in some very frightening ways…eradication of forest ecosystems, along with all the carbon storage and wildlife home benefits they bring; and elimination of freshwater streams that provide drinking water for our survival.”

Meaning, if we don’t get it together, we are going to leave a dying planet to our children, and if we keep it up, maybe even us.

This problem, that many people still choose to ignore, isn’t going to get any better unless we do something about it. We have very little time to turn this around, so we better start working.

Start with something small like eliminating single use plastics from your life to save all of our lives.