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Nature

In two decades the planet loses 10 percent of its wild areas

Ten percent of the planet’s untouched natural areas, around 3.3 million square km, has disappeared in the last two decades, especially in the Amazon and central Africa, according to a study published in Australia Thursday.

The study, led by James Watson of the Wildlife Conservation Society Canada (WCS), and the University of Queensland, says since 1990, South America lost 30 percent of its untouched wild lands because of humans, while Africa lost 14 percent.

In a statement, William Laurance, a research professor at the James Cook University in Australia, which participated in the study, said despite being strongholds of endangered biodiversity and contributing to regulate local climate and maintain many indigenous communities, wild areas are disappearing fast.

Researchers also found around 30 million square km – about 23 percent of the planet’s land area – still remains virgin, especially in North America, North Asia, North Africa and Australia.

For the study, the researchers had prepared a biological and ecological map of the uninhabited regions and compared them to other similar maps drawn up at the beginning of the 1990s.

The study warns there is a need to implement urgent international policies to preserve remaining wild lands before it is too late.

Laurance added there is just a decade or two to reverse this crisis, and added the UN and other world organizations have ignored the situation in environmen.

Sydney, 2016, september 8, EFE/PracticaEspañol

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