A series of images has been released today showing how some of our favourite animals would look if the climate crisis continues. Many of the world’s threatened species live in areas that are becoming increasingly affected by climate change. The WWF has predicted that up to half of plant and animal species in the world’s most naturally rich areas could face local extinction by the turn of the century due to climate change if carbon emissions continue to rise unchecked.
The images, released by Bulb, the UK’s biggest green energy company, predict how five land and sea animals might adapt over the next 100 years in order to survive and avoid extinction due to ongoing carbon emissions and unsustainable habits.
To commission the series, Bulb teamed up with wildlife presenter, naturalist and author, Steve Backshall, to gather his expert insights and predictions – some of which could even become a reality during our lifetime.
The illustrations show how white polar bears could morph into a grizzly bear hybrid and live on the land instead of snow as ice caps continue to melt; puffins could lose their colour and flare by blending into nature, and giant jellyfish the size of dustbins could dominate fishless oceans and start to feed on larger prey, like bottlenose dolphins.
They also show how walruses are at risk of losing their insulating blubber and could struggle to find food. And balding bat-eared foxes with larger ears and feet, and a longer nose, could be seen scavenging in the hot and dry African desert.
Steve Backshall said: “Whilst these illustrations represent an interesting and visual way to bring to life how animals could change in appearance over the next 100 years, it’s concerning to see how much some of our favourite creatures will have to evolve and adapt to survive on the planet. The fact these transformations could start to happen so soon show that we need to take the issue of climate change more seriously if we want to preserve wildlife. Imagine a world with no white polar bears, or some of our favourite colourful birds losing their beautiful uniqueness. It’s down to all of us to do our bit to protect nature and the environment so that this doesn’t happen”
Shaunagh Duncan, Sustainability Lead at Bulb said: “We need to cut carbon emissions to fight climate change. And if we don’t act now, more wildlife will need to adapt to survive. We know that to make a difference, we all have to do our part. At Bulb, we’re committed to helping people reduce their carbon emissions and we’re confident that by making more sustainable choices, such as switching to 100% renewable electricity and carbon neutral gas, we’re able to save our wildlife, and our planet.”