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Global Soil Biodiversity Atlas prepared by the World Wide Fund for Nature

Recently Global Biodiversity Atlas was launched by World Wide Fund for Nature. It describes the condition of the soil health across the world. The Atlas depicts the soil health and the risk index with different colours. A darker shade of green on the map indicated that the risk of pollution, nutrient overloading, over grazing etc is very low. Whereas a deeper shade in red indicates that the risk factor is very high. Blue colour indicates ice and water.

According to this atlas prepared by WWF the soil health in India is in grave peril. The study shows that the threats from loss of above ground diversity, pollution and nutrient overloading, over grazing, intensive agriculture, fire, soil erosion, desertification, and climate change are very high. India is one among the countries which have high levels of threat to soil biodiversity. Soil biodiversity includes micro-organisms, micro fauna and macro fauna. The report also says that 90% of sea birds may have bits of plastic in their stomachs, 20% of Amazon rainforest has disappeared in the last 50 years. There is 60% fall in the number of fish, birds, mammals and reptiles from 1970 to 2014.

The study was a part of bi-annual Living Planet Report (LPR) 2018. The main aspect of this year is factors affecting soil biodiversity and pollinators. The two most important factors that are causing much debated loss and hazard to the soil diversity are over exploitation of natural resources and agriculture as reported by the World Wide Fund for Nature.

Considering the per capita ecological footprint of India which is less than 1.75 hectares per person which is the lowest among the nations that were surveyed by World Wide Fund for Nature; the massive population is the cause of this vulnerable situation to ecological crisis.

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