New study: Just five percent of the world’s land mass is untouched by human activity

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Just five percent of the world’s land mass is untouched by human activity, according to a new study, highlighting the need to protect areas other than pristine wilderness.

Researchers from The Nature Conservancy found 95 percent of the world’s land area, excluding Antarctica, had been modified by people.

The researchers assessed the extent to which land had been modified by humans through 13 different activities, ranging from settlements and agriculture to roads, railways, mining and energy developments such as oil wells and wind farms.

The study, published in the journal Global Change Biology, suggests the degree to which land is affected by human activity is higher than previously reported.

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