Like Earth Day this past Monday, a new companion book to the Netflix documentary series “Our Planet” makes a strong argument for protecting our diminishing world.

“In just four decades,” writes David Attenborough, the famous Briton synonymous with the outdoors who narrates the series, “the number of wild animals has halved, and biodiversity is declining in every region of the world, all as a consequence of the way we have chosen to live.”

The book’s focus, like the series, is the world’s biological domains, with breathtaking photography and urgent prose about the impact of climate change:

Frozen worlds

“Marine biologists believe that four-fifths of the native invertebrate species that live on the seabed around Antarctica are threatened by climate change.”

Fresh water

“Thanks in large part to our engineering works, wildlife in the world’s rivers and freshwater wetlands has declined by 80% in the past half century.”

Grasslands and deserts

“The world has lost as much as a third of [ancient grasslands] to agricultural or human settlement.”


“Park foresters, who once had a zero tolerance of fires, now set their own small blazes to keep up a constant ecological renewal.”

Coastal seas, high seas

“Coastal ecosystems ... sustain more than 80% of the world’s species of marine fish.”

For all the gloomy facts, the imagery shouts a big one: This is a diverse world worth saving.

Find more information about the book “Our Planet” online at