Science Wildlife decline: Why does biodiversity matter anyway? (+video)

Half of the planet's wildlife populations suffered severe decline between 1970 and 2010, according to a new report from the WWF. So what does dwindling biodiversity mean for us?

By , Staff writer

Melanie Stetson Freeman/Staff/File

World Wide Fund for Nature's (WWF) latest assessment of global biodiversity is rife with grim statistics. Between 1970 and 2010, half of all vertebrate species around the globe have sharply declined. In that time, nearly 40 percent of all marine and terrestrial populations have fallen and a staggering 76 percent of freshwater species have been compromised.