That is actually a really hard question to answer. Particular incidences, such as the BP oil spill over the summer, will have vague record keepings of animal deaths directly related to the event, but normally animal deaths are not recorded on larger, more general scale. And there isn’t much investigation into the actual causes of each individual death. That being said, air pollution has been shown to increase infection and inflammation in the lungs of birds, reduce population numbers, and shorten life spans. Poluted water can trap aquatic life as well as contaminate their ecosystems. This can shift salinity levels and pH levels and prohibit certain aquatic species from living in bodies of water they once called home. What’s unfortunate is that 40% of America’s rivers are estimated to be too polluted for fishing, swimming, or any aquatic life.
Individual numbers of animals are very difficult to determine. Global warming has caused significant ice loss in the polar regions, and there could be hundreds of animals that die unnoticed because of how remote their habitat is. A shocking discovery back in 2008 concluded that every hour three species die from habitat destruction and pollution. It is clear that humans need to implement stronger conservation laws and find ways to drastically reduce pollution.
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