photo: Ventura via flickr
Current rates of deforestation in the Amazon will have markedly less impact on the number of plant species to likely go extinct by mid-century, new research shows. Rather than the 20-33% predicted by some studies scientists from Wake Forest University say that 5-9% of species are likely to be extinct, Mongabay reports:The research, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences looked at about 80% of plant species in the Amazon under a business-as-usual deforestation scenario, where 12-24% of the rainforest was chopped down by 2050.
The determining factor in habitat loss and extinction risk for a plant species was found not to be the size species' range, but its location.
The scientists were quick to note that this research and projected rate of plant species extinction does not include aggravating factors such as climate change or "synergistic human disturbances or disruptions of biological interactions."
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