India has added 15 more species to the “Red List” of threatened species published by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in 2014.
- India is at the 7th position now with 988 threatened species on the list. In 2013, the number was 973. With 659 species in 2008, the increase over seven years is 50%, in part due to better research identifying more threatened species and deforestation.
- By adding 37 species, China seemed to have helped India improve its rank.
- A recent World Bank mapping of endangered mammals shows India as having the fourth largest number of threatened species in the world, 31 of them endemic to the region.
- IUCN was founded in October 1948 as the International Union for the Protection of Nature (or IUPN) following an international conference in Fontainebleau, France.
- It was renamed as International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources in 1956 with the acronym IUCN.
- IUCN is the world’s first global environmental organization. Today it is the largest professional global conservation network
- The Union’s HQ is located in Gland, near Geneva, in Switzerland.
- It demonstrates how biodiversity is fundamental to addressing some of the world’s greatest challenges such as climate change, sustainable development and food security.
- The IUCN Red List is set upon precise criteria to evaluate the extinction risk of thousands of species and subspecies. These criteria are relevant to all species and all regions of the world.
- The aim is to convey the urgency of conservation issues to the public and policy makers, as well as help the international community to try to reduce species extinction.
- Species are classified by the IUCN Red List into nine groups, set through criteria such as rate of decline, population size, area of geographic distribution, and degree of population and distribution fragmentation.
Sources: The Hindu, Wiki.