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Home: USES: Human Settlements on the Coast: Destruction of Habitats: Assessment of Impacts: Ecosystem Vitality and Biodiversity
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Ecosystem Vitality and Biodiversity
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The greatest threat to biodiversity
 
" The greatest of all threats to biodiversity, and the most widespread human impact on coastal zones, comes from the destruction and alteration of habitats. This can happen through a wide variety of means; physical, such as draining or 'reclaiming' land, extracting sand or gravel, or the deposition of sediments from soil erosion or deforestation; chemical, such as pollution; and biological, such as invasions of alien species.
 
Habitats, of course, have changed naturally since long before the appearance of humanity, but the sheer scale of the present onslaught is unprecedented.[...] Half of the world's wetlands were lost during the course of the twentieth century. [...] Over half of the world's mangrove forests have been lost, too. Sixty percent of them in Guinea and the Ivory Coast have been cut down, mainly for firewood and housebuilding: about 70 percent of them have been destroyed in Liberia. Seventy percent of coral reefs world-wide are threatened, while only about five percent of Europe's coastline still remains undisturbed. "
 
GESAMP (IMO/FAO/UNESCO-IOC/WMO/WHO/IAEA/UN/UNEP Joint Group of Experts on the Scientific Aspects of Marine Environmental Protection). 2001. A sea of troubles. Rep. Stud. GESAMP No. 70, 35 pp. ISBN 82-7701-010-9
 
 
 
 
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World's Reef Fishes Tussling With Human Overpopulation
by Dalhousie University, ScienceDaily
05 April 2011

Coral reefs provide a range of critical goods and services to humanity -- everything from nutrient cycling to food production to coast protection to economic revenues through tourism -- but will this continue given the ongoing loss of biodiversity in coral reefs.
Read more at http://www.sciencedaily. ... 30347.htm.
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