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Sampling of Environmental News Briefs

Aug. 4, 2001 Humans are causing the extinction of species at a rate rivaling Earths five previous mass extinctions, among them the one that wiped out dinosaurs 65 million years ago, botanists warned this week at the annual meeting of the International Botanical Congress.
WE are predicting the extinction of about two-thirds of all bird, mammal, butterfly and plant species by the end of the next century, based on current trends, said IBC President Peter Raven. At the current pace of habitat destruction, only 5 percent of the worlds tropical rain forest will be left by the middle of the next century, Raven said, basing his estimates on a new review of studies on extinction rates.
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FISHERIES DECLINING AROUND THE GLOBE, Rome, Italy, February 13, 2001 (ENS) - Fish populations around the world are in a continuing decline, prompted by rising fish catches, consumption and trade, finds a new report by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. "Most of the world's fishing areas have apparently reached their maximum potential for capture fisheries production, with the majority of stocks being fully exploited," the report warns.
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TIME AND FOREST RUNNING OUT FOR THE ORANGUTAN NEW YORK, February 26, 2001 (ENS) - The world's largest natural orangutan population will be extinct in about a decade unless poaching and habitat destruction is stopped. That is the finding of research funded by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS), based at the Bronx Zoo.
[Global Warming Summit]

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A few more briefs from 2001

Reefs are the oceanic equivalent of rain forests.
For the past two decades scientists have noticed that most of the world's reefs are dying, under attack from overfishing, pollution from nutrient-rich runoff, beach dredging, disease, dropped anchors and global warming, experts say. Already, 10 percent of the world's reefs are lost, according to the task force's report. Another 30 percent are likely to die by 2030, and a total of 70 percent could be gone by 2050.
BY SETH BORENSTEIN  Herald Washington Bureau
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GOVERNMENTS AGREE: GLOBAL WARMING IMPACT SERIOUS GENEVA, Switzerland, February 19, 2001 (ENS) - The poorest and least adaptable parts of the world will suffer most from climate change over the next 100 years, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)said today in a major report on the impacts of increased global temperatures. For full text and graphics visit: http://ens-news.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-19-01.html
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KILIMANJARO'S WHITE PEAK MAY BE A MEMORY BY 2015 SAN FRANCISCO, California, February 19, 2001 (ENS) - Mount Kilimanjaro has lost one third of its ice fields in the last decade and the rest of its ice could disappear by 2015, says an American scientist who has made an aerial survey of the peak. For full text and graphics, visit: http://ens.lycos.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-19-10.html
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PESTICIDE EXPOSURE COULD BOOST RISK OF MISCARRIAGE By Cat Lazar off CHAPEL HILL, North Carolina, February 19, 2001 (ENS) - Living close to areas where agricultural pesticides are applied may boost the risk of fetal death due to birth defects, a new University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill study indicates. Researchers say their findings suggest but do not prove a hazard from pesticide exposure. For full text and graphics visit:http://ens-news.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-16-06.html
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PANDA COULD BE JUST A LOGO IF HABITAT LOSS CONTINUES Gland, Switzerland, February 19, 2001 (ENS) - Despite being one of the most recognized symbols of the conservation movement, the world's last 1,000 giant pandas are struggling to survive, says a new report. For full text and graphics, visit: http://ens.lycos.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-19-11.html
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INDIAN ELEPHANT POACHERS KILL FIVE IN NATIONAL PARK By Tara Chand Malhotra NEW DELHI, India, February 19, 2001 (ENS) - Elephants are losing their lives to poachers in India. In less than two months, five full grown elephants have been killed by poachers in Jim Corbett National Park in the northern province of Uttar Pradesh. For full text and graphics visit:http://ens-news.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-19-02.html
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FISHERIES SURVIVAL DEPENDS ON PIRATE CRACKDOWN Rome, Italy, February 23, 2001 (ENS) - Attempts to stop pirate fishing are doomed unless this week's negotiations in Italy can improve on a draft international plan, said environmental group Greenpeace, Thursday. http://ens.lycos.com/ens/feb2001/2001L-02-23-11.html
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TOURISM IS KILLING THE MEDITERRANEAN, Berlin, Germany, March 1, 2001 (ENS) - The Mediterranean's soaring popularity among visitors could be its downfall unless a new form of tourism is introduced, the World Wide Fund for Nature said today. t:http://ens-news.com/ens/mar2001/2001L-03-01-10.html
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