• A polar bear lying on a rock with no snow in sight


Climate change can lead to the extinction of species because of a variety of reasons. Firstly, as temperatures get warmer, habitats change. For example, the arctic is melting which means that polar bears won’t have anywhere to live. Numbers of polar bears have gone down by 22% between 1987 and 2004.

Every spring the cherry trees in Japan put on a beautiful display of blossom. Tourists flock from all over the world to see the trees burst into bloom. In October 2017, more than 350 cherry trees bloomed 6 months earlier due to typhoons and irregular weather caused by climate change. This is a problem as the insects that pollinate them are not out and feeding at that time of year. This means the pollinators will get less food in the spring when the cherry trees would normally blossom, and the cherry blossoms may not get pollinated. If the cherry blossoms do not get pollinated, there will be no cherry fruits that year.

The golden toad is a species that is now extinct and the main cause of the extinction was climate change. A long drought caused their mountaintop cloud forest habitat to dry up and the last remaining golden toad was lost in 1989.

The orange-spotted filefish is highly sensitive to warm water. It only liked to live in water that is a certain temperature. The animal went extinct in Japan during an episode of warmer ocean temperatures in 1988.

It is estimated that between 18% and 35% of plant and animal species will become extinct by 2050 due to climate change.