An ecosystem is an area where all the species of plants and animals live and depend on each other. Ecosystems are often delicately balanced, and if that balance is damaged, the results can be unpredictable. People have changed the balance in many ecosystems around the globe, sometimes leading to detrimental consequences.
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People have greatly accelerated extinction rates among animals through over-hunting. Once a species is gone, that unbalances the ecosystem that it comes from, and it can cause a chain reaction of extinctions or population reductions.
People chop down forests for farming and building homes. They also drain wetlands for the same purposes or to irrigate crops. These activities ultimately lead to additional extinction events because it reduces the amount of land available to support different species.
Human industrial society releases a lot of different pollutants into the air. Pollution can damage both plant and animal species and eventually reduce their populations. It can also make certain areas of the planet uninhabitable for many species.
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