Estimating the normal background rate of species extinction.

  title={Estimating the normal background rate of species extinction.},
  author={Jurriaan M. de Vos and Lucas Joppa and John L. Gittleman and Patrick R. Stephens and Stuart L Pimm},
  journal={Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology},
  volume={29 2},
A key measure of humanity's global impact is by how much it has increased species extinction rates. Familiar statements are that these are 100-1000 times pre-human or background extinction levels. Estimating recent rates is straightforward, but establishing a background rate for comparison is not. Previous researchers chose an approximate benchmark of 1 extinction per million species per year (E/MSY). We explored disparate lines of evidence that suggest a substantially lower estimate. Fossil… CONTINUE READING
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