The Species We Lost in 2020

This week's investigative reporting, analysis and environmental news.
The Revelator
Red handfish

No. 166, Jan. 7, 2021

Hello Revelator readers,

Dozens of frog species. More than 60 North American plants. One weird fish that walked around the ocean floor. These are among the species declared extinct in 2020.


Critically endangered black-footed ferrets have started receiving an experimental vaccine to — we hope — protect them from COVID-19. Learn more about why these animals are threatened, and what's being done to help them.

Subscriber bonus: The Wild 5

Here are five more stories we're watching this week.

1. "EPA Finalizes Rule to Limit Science Behind Public Health Safeguards" (The Washington Post)

2. "One in Three U.S. Rivers Have Changed Color Since 1984. Here's What This Means" (Salon)

3. "Massachusetts to Require 100% of Car Sales to Be Electric by 2035" (The Hill)

4. "Nearly 600 Manatees Died in Florida Waters in 2020; Draft Rules Could Help Deaths" (Fort Myers News-Press)

5. "A New Population of Blue Whales Was Discovered Hiding in the Indian Ocean" (The New York Times)

What should we cover next?

Our stories rely on insight from experts, frontline activists and readers around the world — especially these days, when so much damage is being done behind the scenes, out of the public eye. We want to hear from you, so please drop us a line anytime.

Coming up:

Should corporations take more responsibility for plastic waste? We'll talk about that tomorrow. Also in the wings: the link between clean energy and justice.

Look for our latest links in next Thursday's newsletter — or follow us on Twitter and Facebook for headlines as they go live.

As always, thank you for reading. Stay safe.

John R. Platt

John R. Platt
Editor, The Revelator


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The red handfish, a relative of the extinct smooth handfish. Photo: Thor Carter/CSIRO Marine Research (CC BY 3.0).

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