The Living Planet Index (LPI) is a measure of the state of global biological diversity based on population trends of vertebrate species from around the world. It does this in much the same way that a stock market index tracks the value of a set of shares or a retail price index tracks the cost of a basket of consumer goods.
The Living Planet Database (LPD) currently holds time-series data for over 21,000 populations of more than 4,200 mammal, bird, fish, reptile, amphibian and butterfly species from around the world, which are gathered from a variety of sources such as journals, online databases and government reports.
Using a method developed by ZSL and WWF, these species population trends are aggregated to produce indices of the state of biodiversity for communication and informing policy.
The rest of our work focusses on expanding the coverage of LPI data to more broadly represent vertebrate biodiversity from all around the globe and disaggregating the index to measure trends in different thematic areas.
This includes assessing the changes in different taxonomic groups, looking at species trends at a national or regional level, identifying how different threats affect populations and providing an insight into how conservation intervention can promote species recoveries.