Reconciling human development with conservation requires a comprehensive understanding of the current ecological condition and spatial distribution of land.
Using recent and spatially explicit global datasets, this study quantifies the degree of human modification across all terrestrial lands, ecoregions, and biomes1. The results suggest that fewer unmodified lands remain than previously reported and that the majority of the world is in a state of intermediate modification, with 52% of ecoregions classified as ‘moderately modified’. The researchers state that these regions are highly fragmented due to human activities and fall within critical land-use thresholds2 — they require urgent attention. These regions, therefore, require proactive spatial planning to maintain biodiversity and ecosystem function before vital environmental resources are lost…read more