Many types of life forms from around the world are threatened because of over-exploitation. This is when our use of that species or resource renders it near extinction. Overpopulation has increased the “need” for over- exploitation, a “need” that cannot be sustained at our current rate of consumption.
Over-harvesting is a big problem with many of our natural resources. The harvesting of forests and the extraction of oil and gas are examples of non renewable resources whose over-use has severely impacted local environments and biodiversity.
Over-exploitation is also a huge problem for wildlife. Fish are a very good example of this as every year over 80 million fish are caught for human utilization. Sometimes the way that the fishing is done destroys marine habitats and catches many other marine animals by accident. These practices cause marine populations to shrink and have a huge impact on biodiversity.
Species trade is a very big problem in many countries. Thousands of plants and animals are taken from their natural habitats every day to be sold, traded or made into various products, including gifts (ivory from elephant tusks, coral, sea turtle shells and reptile skins are popular souvenirs that threaten species). Other products, like traditional Chinese medicines, can also be made using threatened and endangered animals.
Animals are often traded as well. But it’s not just the large animals that are trapped and traded. Insects like butterflies and rare coral fish are also illegally traded.
Over-exploitation seems to be swept under the rug as we continue to perpetuate the over consumptive attitude that fuels the over-exploitation of our natural resources. We as a people have to change our attitude one person at a time to help further the concept of biodiversity
Posted by David Ferguson