IPBES report on Invasive Alien Species is here!

Read the full report from IPBES: 423 billion dollars per year lost as a consecuenc...

The report on Invasive Alien Species has been published today by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). The scope of this assessment is to critically evaluate evidence on the trends, drivers and impacts of biological invasions and outline key responses and policy options for effective control of invasive alien species and mitigation of their impacts in order to safeguard nature, nature’s contributions to people, and good quality of life.

The Invasive Alien Species are a subset of all alien species and can be introduced via multiple pathways, intentionally or not. Invasive alien species are recognized as one of the five major direct drivers of biodiversity loss globally, alongside land- and sea-use change, direct exploitation of organisms, climate change and pollution. Effective management of biological invasions is key to achieving the targets set by the Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, including the Sustainable Development Goals, and can contribute to the achievement of other global targets.

The numbers confirms we introduced something like 37.000  Alien Species in the world, 3.500 became Invasive Alien Species due to their negative impacts and diffusion. Biological invasions have caused both the decline and the extinction of native species and have been a significant driver in 60 per cent of documented global animal and plant extinctions. The loss of the biotic uniqueness of biological communities through biotic homogenization is a major negative impact of biological invasion – without considering the costs, estimated in more than 423 billions of dollars (huge underestimation, according to the scientists). Most of the consequences affect the most fragile populations and category. At the present, policies have not been adequate to respond to this crisis. Only 20% of countries have something in place, while 45% do not invest at all in alien species management. Not acting together wakens any policy, goes without saying.

Globally, biological invasions and their impact are increasing rapidly and predicted to continue rising in the future, further amplificating the consequences on the different environments. Since the drivers of change are not reducing, the extensions and pace on consequences should even gain pace.

But there is also a good news: Biological invasions and their adverse impact can be prevented and mitigated through effective management

Curbing the rising number of invasive alien species and reducing their impact is achievable. There are many decision frameworks and approaches for supporting management of invasive alien species at all stages of the biological invasion process. While prevention is the best option, eradication, containment and control are also effective in specific contexts. Management of biological invasions benefits from engagement with stakeholders and Indigenous Peoples and local communities. Needless to say, Ambitious progress in biological invasion management can be achieved with an integrated approach to governance that combines and connects key strategic actions – which means nature-based policies and international collaboration…

Here’s the report in numbers:


  • >37,000: alien species established worldwide
  • 200: new alien species recorded every year
  • >3,500: invasive alien species recorded globally, including 1,061 plants (6% of all alien plant species), 1,852 invertebrates (22%), 461 vertebrates (14%) and 141 microbes (11%)
  • 37%: proportion of known alien species reported since 1970
  • 36%: anticipated increase in alien species by 2050 compared to 2005, under a “business-as-usual” scenario (assumes past trends in drivers of change continue)
  • >35%: proportion of alien freshwater fish in the Mediterranean basin that have arisen from aquaculture


  • 34%: proportion of impacts reported in the Americas (31% Europe and Central Asia; 25% Asia Pacific; 7% Africa
  • 75%: impacts reported in the terrestrial realm (mostly in temperate and boreal forests and woodlands and cultivated areas)
  • 14%: proportion of impacts reported in freshwater ecosystems 
  • 10%: proportion of impacts reported in the marine realm
  • 60%: proportion of recorded global extinctions to which invasive alien species have contributed
  • 16%: proportion of recorded global extinctions in which invasive alien species have been the sole driver
  • 1,215: local extinctions of native species caused by 218 invasive alien species (32.4% were invertebrates, 50.9% vertebrates, 15.4% plants, 1.2% microbes)
  • 27%: invasive alien species impacts on native species through ecosystem properties changes (24% through interspecific competition; 18% through predation; 12% through herbivory)
  • 90%: global extinctions on islands attributed mainly to invasive alien species
  • >$423 billion: estimated annual economic cost of biological invasions, 2019
  • 92%: proportion of economic costs of biological invasions attributed to invasive alien species damaging nature’s contributions to people and good quality of life (with the remaining 8% of costs related to biological invasion management)
  • >2,300: invasive alien species documented on lands managed, used and/or owned by Indigenous Peoples
  • 4x: rise in the economic cost of biological invasions in every decade since 1970         

Policy and management:

  • 80% (156 out of 196): countries with targets in national biodiversity strategies and action plans for managing biological invasions
  • >200%: increase in the last decade in the number of countries with national invasive alien species checklists, including databases (196 countries in 2022)
  • 83%: countries without specific national legislation or regulations on invasive alien species
  • 88%: success rate of eradication programmes (1,550) conducted on 998 islands
  • >60%: success rates of biological control programs for invasive alien plants and invertebrates  

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