Eleanor Hildebrandt | April 22, 2022
As the planet grows warmer, 60 percent of cactus species are at a greater risk of extinction by 2050.
While the earth gets hotter and drier, a new study found cacti are set to be in more danger than they already are. Poaching, habitat destruction, and other human-caused threats to the plants already make them one of the world’s most endangered organisms, according to The New York Times. Cacti thrive in a variety of environments, including rainforests and high altitudes, not just deserts. The study looked at a quarter of known cactus species and found many of types could experience significant declines in the land that is hospitable for them if the planet continues to warm up as it has in recent history.
The study, however, does not account for any extreme events. No wildfires or droughts were factored in based on where certain species are typically found. Researchers touted the new research as “pivotal” for showing what cacti could look like in the near and far future.