The speed at which mankind has used the Earth’s resources over the past 20 years has put “humanity’s very survival” at risk, a study involving 1,400 scientists has concluded.
The environmental audit, for the United Nations, found that each person in the world now requires a third more land to supply his or her needs than the Earth can supply
per cent of amphibians, 23 per cent of mammals and 12 per cent of birds are under threat of extinction, while one in ten of the world’s major rivers runs dry every year before it reaches the sea.
The bleak verdict on the environment was issued as an “urgent call for action” by the United Nations Environment Programme, which said that the “point of no return” was fast approaching.
British life has been ranked as being among the least satisfying in the West.
Despite a stable economy, a booming housing market and falling unemployment, there are many reasons for unhappiness, according to the Global Prosperity Index.
Mexicans have more reason to be positive about their everyday lives, it says.
The UK was ranked 17th out of 50 nations, behind front-runners Norway, Sweden and the United States.
The reasons for the UK’s poor showing included a high divorce rate, a relatively large number of people unemployed in comparison to other nations and problems with the health service.