More than 99 percent of all organisms that have ever lived on Earth are extinct. As new species evolve to fit ever changing ecological niches, older species fade away.

Even though the rate of extinction is far from constant, it is now occurring hundreds of times faster than it would naturally. Earth is currently experiencing a biodiversity crisis.

And while we haven’t yet crossed the 75-percent threshold of a mass extinction, that doesn’t mean things are fine. Well before hitting that grim marker, the damage would throw the ecosystems we call home into chaos, jeopardizing species around the world—including us.*

*National Geographic