Working Paper BETA #2018-19

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Title : Is a peaceful cohabitation between living species possible? An empirical analysis on the drivers of threatened species

Author(s) : Laté Ayao Lawson, Phu Nguyen-Van

Abstract : Some scientific views argue that human population and economic activities might be expanding at the cost of other biological species. Hence, this paper proposes an empirical analysis on the case of threatened animal and plant species, exploiting an international panel dataset to test whether there is a peaceful cohabitation with human activities. Applying count data regression techniques we show, on the one hand, that human population growth and agricultural production harm animal and plant species. On the other hand, our results indicate that the number of threatened animal and plant species depicts an inverted U-shaped curve with income per capita. Our analysis further suggests that the more biological species-rich a region is, the more threatened species it holds, other things being equal. Globally compared to developing countries, developed countries definitely appear to be threatening fewer animal and plant species, suggesting a possible peaceful cohabitation between living species.

Key-words : Biodiversity loss, threatened species, income, population, control function approach.

JEL Classification : C23, C29, Q57