A call for conservation scientists to empirically study the effects of human population policies on biodiversity loss
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Copyright (c) 2021 Niki Rust, Laura Kehoe
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
The world is changing more quickly now than it ever has before, predominantly due to our large consumption rates and population size. Despite this epoch being well-accepted as the 'Anthropocene', it is surprising that there is still a lack of willingness by many conservation scientists to engage with the consequences of human population dynamics on biodiversity. We highlight the importance of addressing the effects of our population abundance, density and growth rate on conservation and note that environmental organisations are beginning to embrace this problem but the take-up amongst conservation researchers to empirically study their effect on biodiversity is slow. We argue that the lack of published research may partly be because the topic is still considered taboo. We therefore urge conservation scientists to direct more of their research efforts on this issue, particularly to examples that highlight the effects of Population, Health and Environment (PHE) projects and female education initiatives on biodiversity.
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