This is likely due to human influcence. There are more people on the planet than there have ever been and we have come used to having larger homes and modern conveniences which require a lot of trees and natural resources to produce. We have been deforesting the natural habitats for many animals and plants, over fishing our oceans and lakes, polluting and poaching. All of these things lead to higher extinction rates.
Another factor is that we are monitoring them more closely now. There was a time when we could discover many new species in a single year, and now that we know they exist, we can monitor their populations and vulnerability.
There also seems to be a polarization of people who either care about the natural cycle of species and their interactions, and those who feel they are irrelevant. Of course there are people who fall inbetween these (nothing is ever black and white) but this lack of understanding and respect for species yields disregard for their survival needs.
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