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SRLI – the story so far…..

The IUCN Red List evaluates the risk of extinction that a species faces, according to a set of rigorous criteria. It forms the world's most authoritative and comprehensive catalogue of threatened species as well as listing those species presently not considered to be threatened. Each species is assessed according to threat of extinction, and assigned a category consisting of Critically Endangered (very close to extinction), Endangered (very high risk of extinction) , Vulnerable (high risk of extinction), Near Threatened (close to qualifying for or is likely to qualify for a threatened category in the near future), Least Concern (under no or little risk of extinction) and Data Deficient (insufficient information to make an assessment).  As plants are such a huge and diverse group, the Sampled Red List Index (SRLI) for Plants has randomly selected a sample of 7,000 out of the worlds 380,000 known plant species, which gives us a representative picture of the overall group.

In 2010 the first phase of the SRLI for Plants project revealed that one in five plants are threatened with extinction, and around a third of plants are so poorly known that we do not know if they are threatened or not. This Phase also found that tropical rainforests contain the highest number of threatened species, gymnosperms are the most threatened group, the impact of humanity far outweighs natural threats to plant species accounting for 81% of threats, and the single greatest threat to plants is conversion of natural habitats to agricultural use, impacting 33% of threatened species. 

For the Convention on Biological Diversity ‘Aichi’ Biodiversity Targets of 2020, the project aims to reassess these species as part of an ongoing global monitoring effort, so threats and trends in the status of plants can be understood.

For more information, please see: 'Plants at Risk'

This site contains IUCN Red List conservation assessments completed as part of the Sampled Red List Index for Plants project. Please register and post a comment if you know anything relating to the conservation status of a species from the sample, as theses are being regularly reassessed. Please note that all assessments are pending approval for listing on the IUCN Red List website, unless otherwise stated.

Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith