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Sir David Attenborough issues stark warning: ‘Humans are destroying themselves by destroying nature’

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Sir David Attenborough.
Sir David Attenborough wants us to heed his warning (Picture: Shannon Finney/Getty Images)

Sir David Attenborough has given another stark warning to humans of Earth, warning us that we’re doing a good job of destroying ourselves as we continue to lay waste to the natural world.

The naturalist and broadcaster has previously spoken of his concern that ‘people will take their eyes off the environmental issue’ because of Covid-19, and it’s clear he’s still keen to make sure we’re heeding his message before it’s too late.

Speaking on the new Call Of The Wild podcast with Cel Spellman, the 94-year-old said: ‘Human beings are all pervasive, everywhere … you can’t get away from human beings anymore.

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‘There are oil slicks and bits of plastic floating in the remotest part of the oceans. We have destroyed nature.

‘We’ve been so clever that we’ve found methods and ways and techniques of actually destroying nature in order to put in what we choose, and we’ve done it without thought over vast areas of the planet as though the planet belonged only to us.’

He went on: ‘We depend on the natural world for interests, for everything that’s beautiful and wonderful. But also we depend on it for every breath of air we take and every mouthful of food we eat.

‘And if we damage the natural world, we are damaging ourselves. And we have been doing that without care for decades.’

Adding nature has a glorious ability to regenerate, Sir David – who recently slammed ‘ignorant’ anti-vaxxers – recalled the risk of whales going extinct due to man’s proclivity for hunting them ‘hand over fist’ decades ago.

He went on: ‘Nations were competing to see how many they killed until suddenly some, or a number of people, were saying ‘”If we don’t stop this, there will be no more whales in the sea and then everybody would have lost everything”.

‘And they got the whaling nations of the world, the maritime nations of the world, together and got them […] to agree that they would stop whaling. And now there are more whales that have been in the sea for a century.’

Sir David Attenborough.
Sir David has been warning us of mankind’s impact on the natural world (Picture: BBC)

If you were wondering how on Earth we can repair our relationship with, well, Earth, Sir David explained one of the simplest things we can do is to just, simply, stop.

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‘Sit down. Don’t move. Keep quiet. Wait 10 minutes. You’ll be very surprised if something pretty interesting didn’t happen within 10 minutes,’ he said. ‘Doing that in a woodland, if you haven’t done it, is extraordinary. Don’t get too impatient either.’

Sir David went on to say: ‘And then, speaking for myself, then you’ll realise how ignorant you are, how you can’t actually recognise what that birdcall is, which you ought to be able to, I certainly ought to be able to do.’

Sir David’s warning followed his urgent plea to save the planet in the final episode of his series A Perfect Planet on BBC One, which left viewers ‘heartbroken’ by the destruction we’ve collectively caused.

‘Right now we have the capacity and knowledge to stop the damage we’re doing,’ the TV stalwart announced. ‘But what we don’t have is time.’

He continued: ‘My inspiration and hope for the future lies with the next generation.

‘But we all have a responsibility to reduce our carbon footprints, harness the forces of nature for our energy and protect the natural world.

‘The survival of humanity and our fellow creatures on earth depends upon it.’

Sir David Attenborough is on Call Of The Wild with Cel Spellman and WWF on Apple, Spotify and all podcast providers.

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