Climate Change Killing Komodo: On the verge of Extinction, Indonesia
by Anindha W. Hapsari
On a dirt path into Komodo National Park in Indonesia, Resting some gigantic lizards known as Komodo Dragon. Theses dragons are now at risk of extinction because of Climate Change. As Climate Change is doing what millions of years could not have done for them; Pushing them for extinction in their dominant habitats. Climate change is not a new story; it is a long-term crisis that has affected most aspects of our lives and our planet, with the majority of the negative consequences referring to negative progression not only for the world, but also for our daily lives in our livelihood, whether in big cities, small towns, or even villages. As we all know, the impacts of climate change are felt in every country across the globe, including Indonesia. Then, for Indonesia, climate change has become a long-term crisis, beginning with a heat wave that can cause forest fires to floods that can hit big cities such as Jakarta, as well as rising sea levels that affect not only the land but also endangered animals such as the Komodo dragon.
- On only four islands wide world live Komodo dragons. These four islands which located in Indonesia are Komodo, Gila Motang, Rinca, and Flores. In 1980, the national park was founded to be a nature reserves in order to protect the Komodo dragon. And later was declared as a world heritage site by UNESCO. Despite that, Komodo dragons have gone from “vulnerable” to “endangered” according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature’s (IUCN) Red List. Climate Change has negative affect on these giant lizards and their natural and only habitats. It’s estimated that rising global temperatures and rising sea levels will reduce the Komodo dragon habitat by at least 30% over the next 45 years.
As we can see, the impact has been quite severe because it has also affected Komodo National Park in Komodo Island and its surroundings, including the Komodo dragon, and there are even many unspoken plans to move the Komodo dragon to another island, which may reduce the range of Komodo dragon habitats and potentially lead to the extinction of this species. Then, when I see that the fact shows that the Komodo dragon is on the verge of extinction, I am saddened and concerned, because conserving endangered animals is one of my personal concerns, and the Komodo dragon is one of Indonesia’s endangered animals. Furthermore, Komodo dragons play an important role in the ecosystem by maintaining the balance in the animal food chain, and the animal food chain is just as important as the human food chain. However, this is a matter for everyone, not just Indonesians, because we have a responsibility to protect our planet, including animals, especially endangered animals like the Komodo dragon from extinction that are playing a huge role on balancing our ecosystem. If these reasons aren’t convincing enough to persuade another human being about climate change and its impact on endangered animals like the Komodo dragon, we need to see how the chaos exists when we see the ecosystem, the imbalance at the animal food chain, and the number of damage itself on the Komodo dragon.
Aside from that, we humans have a commitment to uphold and ensure the sustainability of our environment, not only for humans but also for animals, particularly endangered species like the Komodo dragon. So, we have no right to dismiss our responsibilities if we are already aware of the upheaval and the dire state of the Komodo dragon as a result of climate change. Then, because of the state of our planet is deteriorating due to the increasing number of negative effects from climate change that are affecting not only our environment but also endangered animals such as the Komodo dragon in this case, we must step up and take action, even if it is on the smallest scale of solution implementation, to prevent further damage from occurring as events in the climate change impacts chains continue. Aside from that, who will go one step further to stop the destruction and prevent further damage in this crisis if not us? Last but not least, you should understand that when you have a voice and the ability to take action for a solution or to solve a long-term crisis such as climate change, we need to step up and use our voice as well as our ability to begin the crisis-solving process not only for the temporary and the privileged, but also for a long time period and for all because we have had enough pain and damage
from this crisis.
Aninda W. Hapsari
Aninda W. Hapsari is holding B.S in International Relations. She is a proud Indonesian who wants to make a meaningful and Impactful contribution for a better, brighter world for all living beings. She is an active program officer at AAYFO.