While The Last Extinction is fiction, the issues addressed in the novel are very real.
On this page, we track these issues and encourage you to do the same.
  • Great Barrier Reef: More than half of corals dead in some areas north of Cairns


    By ABC – May 30, 2016

    Bleaching has killed 35 per cent of coral in central and northern parts of the Great Barrier Reef, extensive aerial and underwater surveys have revealed.

    The ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies research is the first confirmation of how much coral has died in the World Heritage area since the mass bleaching began earlier this year.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • The illegal pet trade is wiping out Indonesia’s birds


    By National Geographic – May 25, 2016

    Indonesians on the island of Java have an old saying: A man is considered to be a real man if he has a house, a wife, a horse, a keris (dagger), and a bird.

    The sprawling island nation is home to more than 1,600 species of birds, more than almost any other country in the world. It’s also home to the greatest number of species that are threatened by the bird trade.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • World could warm by massive 10C if all fossil fuels are burned


    By The Guardian – May 23, 2016

    The planet would warm by searing 10C if all fossil fuels are burned, according to a new study, leaving some regions uninhabitable and wreaking profound damage on human health, food supplies and the global economy.

    The Arctic, already warming fast today, would heat up even more – 20C by 2300 – the new research into the extreme scenario found.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Scientists confirm their fears about East Antarctica’s biggest glacier


    By The Washington Post – May 18, 2016

    Scientists ringing alarm bells about the melting of Antarctica have focused most of their attention, so far, on the smaller West Antarctic ice sheet, which is grounded deep below sea level and highly exposed to the influence of warming seas. But new research published in the journal Nature Wednesday reaffirms that there’s a possibly even bigger — if slower moving — threat in the much larger ice mass of East Antarctica.

    The Totten Glacier holds back more ice than any other in East Antarctica, which is itself the biggest ice mass in the world by far.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • World’s largest floating windfarm to be built off Scottish coast


    By The Guardian – May 16, 2016

    The world’s largest floating windfarm is set to be built off the coast of Scotland after its developers were granted a seabed lease on Monday.

    Statoil, the Norwegian energy company, expects to have five 6MW turbines bobbing in the North Sea and generating electricity by the end of 2017. The company has already operated a single turbine off Norway.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Fires fuelled by warming climate are increasing


    By Associated Press – May 11, 2016

    Alberta’s unusually early and large fire is just the latest of many gargantuan fires on an Earth that’s grown hotter with more extreme weather.

    Earlier this year, large wildfires hit spots on opposite ends of the world — Tasmania and Oklahoma-Kansas. Last year, Alaska and California pushed the U.S. to a record 10 million acres burned. Massive fires hit Siberia, Mongolia and China last year and Brazil’s fire season has increased by a month over the past three decades.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • After the Pacific Ocean swallows villages and five Solomon Islands, a study blames climate change


    By The Washington Post – May 9, 2016

    In a recent paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters, the scientists link the destructive sea level rise to anthropogenic — that is, human-caused — climate change. The study is the first time anyone has concretely analyzed the loss of Solomon Island shoreline in the context of global warming, they say.

    Such work comes at a time when coastal villages — where a few hundred people like Sutaroti might live, whose familial roots could stretch back a century — have scattered, re-forming in smaller clusters where there is suitable higher ground. On the island of Nuatambu, the sea has claimed 11 houses.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • US ceases efforts to end global trade of polar bear parts


    By The Guardian – May 4, 2016

    The US government has quietly dropped its campaign for an international ban in the trade of polar bear parts, which would have given the practice the same outlaw status as the elephant ivory market.

    The US Fish and Wildlife Service has spent several years attempting to ban the overseas trade of polar bear skins, teeth, paws and other parts from Canada, which permits the hunting of the Arctic predators.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Vanishing Arctic ice shifts jet stream, which melts Greenland glaciers


    By The Washington Post – May 2, 2016

    Investigating the factors affecting ice melt in Greenland — one of the most rapidly changing places on Earth — is a major priority for climate scientists. And new research is revealing that there are a more complex set of variables affecting the ice sheet than experts had imagined. A recent set of scientific papers have proposed a critical connection between sharp declines in Arctic sea ice and changes in the atmosphere, which they say are not only affecting ice melt in Greenland, but also weather patterns all over the North Atlantic.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Oxygen drain will be apparent in oceans by 2030s


    By UPI – April 27, 2016

    Climate models suggest climate change is slowly sapping oxygen from the world’s oceans. In some places, declining oxygen levels are already discernible, but in most oceanic regions, scientists struggle to differentiate between climate change-related losses and natural fluctuations.

    A new model, developed by researchers at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, suggests scientists’ differentiation difficulties won’t last much longer. By the 2030s, oxygen losses caused by climate change will be widespread and readily apparent.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Grauer’s Gorillas may soon be extinct, conservationists say


    By The New York Times – April 25, 2016

    The Grauer’s gorilla, the world’s largest primate, has been a source of continual worry for conservationists for more than two decades. Longstanding conflict in the deep jungles of the eastern Democratic Republic of Congo left experts with no choice but to guess at how that gorilla subspecies may be faring.

    Now, with tensions abating somewhat, researchers finally have an updated gorilla head count — one that confirms their fears. According to findings compiled by an international team of conservationists, Grauer’s gorilla populations have plummeted 77 percent over the last 20 years, with fewer than 3,800 of the animals remaining.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • How Earth itself has dramatically upped the stakes for the Paris climate accord


    By The Washington Post – April 20, 2016

    Representatives from more than 150 countries will gather at the United Nations on Friday to officially sign a global accord aimed at slashing greenhouse gas emissions and slowing climate change. But in the four months since that historic pact was negotiated in Paris, a drumbeat of grim scientific findings has underscored that staving off the worst consequences of global warming may take far more aggressive actions.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • What the world thinks about climate change in 7 charts

    Screen Shot 2016-04-18 at 6.37.57 PM

    By Pew Research Center – April 18, 2016

    Majorities in all 40 nations polled say climate change is a serious problem, and a global median of 54% believe it is a very serious problem. Still, the intensity of concern varies substantially across regions and nations. Latin Americans and sub-Saharan Africans are particularly worried about climate change. Americans and Chinese, whose countries have the highest overall carbon dioxide emissions, are less concerned.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • World’s largest coal producer files for bankruptcy protection


    By The Guardian – April 13, 2016

    Peabody Energy, the world’s largest privately owned coal producer, has filed for bankruptcy protection in the US following a collapse in commodity prices.

    The move was blamed by financial analysts partly on a mistimed and debt-fuelled expansion into Australia, but others saw it as a sign that the most carbon-intensive fossil fuel was threatened by tightening environmental regulation.

    FULL STORY: click here

  • Climate change is drying up islands


    By Discovery News – April 11, 2016

    That romantic hike through a lush tropical island may be an experience for today’s couples instead of their kids or grandkids. Climate researchers say that small islands in the Caribbean, Pacific and Atlantic will be drying out as the world’s temperatures rise and rainfall patterns shift toward the middle and end of this century.

    Some small islands will become wetter, but the majority — 73 percent — will become drier. That means less freshwater for local residents, agricultural products that sustain the islands’ economies, and vegetation and wildlife that depend on the island’s unique ecosystems.

    FULL STORY: click here