A new report finds that only five nations hold 70% of the untouched natural ecosystems left in the world. Russia, Canada, Australia, the United States, and Brazil harbor the majority of the last remains of totally natural habitats.
The researchers defined “wilderness” as territory free of “human pressures” — including settlements, farmland and transportation infrastructure — over an uninterrupted range of 10,000 sq. km. (3,861 sq. mi.). The survey excludes Antarctica and the open seas, but the authors note that marine regions “free of industrial fishing, pollution and shipping are almost completely confined to the polar regions.”