Austrialian Koala Foundation Exaggerated Claim of Functional Extinction
On May 10, 2019, the Australian Koala Foundation issued a press release that opened with the sentence “The Australian Koala Foundation (AKF) believes Koalas may be functionally extinct in the entire landscape of Australia.” The press release was reported on by multiple news agencies around the world, with most repeating the AKF’s statement. Koalas are NOT currently considered functionally extinct. The IUCN Red List lists them only as “Vulnerable”. The AKF’s press release was released on the eve of the 2019 elections in Australia, where topics such as climate change were a major issue.
Environmental Groups perform a disservice by overplaying hysterical hype.
There are only about 40,000 to 100,000 koalas remaining after wildfires decimated the population according to the Australia Zoo. More than 2.5 million koalas have been killed to supply the fur trade in America and Europe.
Brian Wang is a Futurist Thought Leader and a popular Science blogger with 1 million readers per month. His blog Nextbigfuture.com is ranked #1 Science News Blog. It covers many disruptive technology and trends including Space, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Medicine, Anti-aging Biotechnology, and Nanotechnology.
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