A massive 12% percent of South Africa's species are under threat.
Those are the worrying findings of a national biodiversity assessment carried out by the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries.
Throughout the world ecosystems and species are under severe pressure as a result of environmental degradation and climate change.— Barbara Creecy, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries
Grim as the news is, it's not as bad as the international figure of endangered species which is sitting at about 25 %.— Barbara Creecy, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries
Currently, four of the Big Five are considered endangered species (African Elephant, African Lion , African Leopard-, Southern White Rhino and Eastern Black Rhino), but frogs and toads, also appear on the IUCN Red List of critically endangered species.
Creecy says the impact of climate change is that it will exacerbate the dry conditions in South Africa, meaning the protection of catchment areas and rehabilitation of wetlands is paramount.
Many of the species we are worried about are associated with our freshwater ecosystems.— Barbara Creecy, Minister of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries
Listen to the full conversation below:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : What does the future hold for SA's endangered species?