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Pine martens
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Pine martens (Martes martes) are one of the species hovering on the brink of extinction in the UK. Photograph: Nature Picture Library/Alamy


Homechevron_rightSciencechevron_rightBritain lost half of...

Britain lost half of its biodiversity since the industrial revolution: Study

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Farming and urban spread initiated by the industrial revolution and agricultural revolution has led to the loss of half of Britain's natural biodiversity. And the UK is one of the worst-rated nations in case of the loss of its ecosystem.

A study at London's Natural History Museum found that the UK's natural biodiversity has been disappearing over the centuries. It has lost more than anywhere else in western Europe, G7 nations, and other nations like Chia, reported The Guardian.

Dr Adriana De Palma, a senior researcher at the museum said that the UK was consistently ranked in the bottom 10% of nations in terms of biodiversity intactness.

Professor Andy Purvis, of the museum's life science department, told the daily that the findings are "very striking and worrying". Mr Purvis and his team are hoping to start discussions that will establish firm goals that would halt the loss of wildlife and degradation of habitats.

Scientists have drawn up a biodiversity index (BII) that rates nations for how well their ecosystems have kept their natural diversity of animals, plants and fungi.

The index shows that biodiversity tends to be at a high level in developing nations but it is falling rapidly. And biodiversity has been stable in much of the developed world for the past 20 years but has been at a low level throughout that period, reported The Guardian.

The authors of the study suspect that the UK has suffered such loss because agricultural and industrial revolutions started in the UK. Mr Purvis said that the mechanised destruction of nature in order to convert it into goods for profit triggered the depletion of nature.

The index also revealed that the overall biodiversity intactness in the world is estimated at 75%. This is significantly lower than the 90% average which is considered to be a safe limit for ensuring the planet does not tip into an ecological recession and end up with widespread starvation.

The experts at the Natural History Museum believe that it will be a relatively straightforward process for Britain to improve its biodiversity rating. But it should not be done by "offshoring" (a system where the UK will let developing nations provide goods and foods).

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TAGS:Pine Martens Bio Diversity 
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