News Round-Up

COVID-19 shutdowns will give wildlife only short-term relief from climate change and other threats


There had to be a silver lining to the nearly universal lockdown of the COVID-19 pandemic. One of the small benefits has been a temporarily lighter human footprint in many ecosystems.

Wildlife sightings are increasing, air quality is improving and carbon emissions are dropping. While these glimmers of positivity cannot come close to eclipsing the tragic human cost of the coronavirus, many are now asking what the pandemic will mean for wildlife around the globe.

Global carbon dioxide emissions for 2020 are expected to fall by up to eight per cent due to shutdowns, although the resumption of global activity could increase emissions and offset some of these gains. While this is a significant reduction in our expected emissions, it’s far from enough to turn the tide on climate change’s impacts on biodiversity. MORE

Header image: Bombus ternarius, the tricoloured bumblebee, seen on Manitoulin Island, Ont. Credit: Peter Soroye.