When it comes to human destruction, marine animals have fared pretty well compared to land species. But a study published Thursday finds that the human effect on marine life is escalating at such a pace that it’s on the verge of causing major extinction, signaling a greater call to action, according to the study published in the journal Science. But there’s still time to reverse the effects, according to Douglas J. McCauley, an ecologist at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and co-author of the study. Culling data from a wide range of sources, McCauley and his team found that humans have driven fewer than 50 marine species to extinction in comparison to wiping out the more than 500 land animals in the past few centuries. However, the human footprint is likely to cause same extinction to fragile underwater ecosystems not only through fishing and overharvesting, but also seabed mining, aquaculture, pollution, acidification, and climate change-driven ocean warming, according to the report.
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