Destruction of habitat and loss of biodiversity are creating the perfect conditions for diseases like COVID-19 to emerge

As habitat and biodiversity loss increase globally, the novel coronavirus outbreak may be just the beginning of mass pandemics

Illicit Endangered Wildlife Trade in Möng La, Shan, Myanmar Photo courtesy of Dan Bennett from Wikimedia, licensed under CC BY 2.0.
Logging and other habitat disruption creates new opportunities for disease organisms to move from non-human animals to people. Photo courtesy of euflegtredd from Flickr licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0
The emergence of COVID-19 as a global threat is drawing attention to the important connections between human and ecosystem well-being. Photo courtesy of Chad Davis from Flickr licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0.
UCL biodiversity expert Kate Jones calls the spread of disease from wildlife to humans “a hidden cost of human economic development.” Photo courtesy of Kate Jones
Disease ecologist Richard Ostfeld is one of a growing number of researchers looking at the human health impacts of ecosystem changes through a “planetary health” lens. Photo courtesy of Robin Moore © Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
Bushmeat is one channel through which viruses can travel from wild animals to humans. Photo courtesy of Karsing Megu & Victor Meyer-Rochow. | Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn

Ensia is a solutions-focused nonprofit media outlet reporting on our changing planet.

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