Global Impoverishment

When I read this blog post by our friend Bryan Pfeiffer, a New England naturalist based at the University of Vermont, I thought it should get wider circulation.  So, I am simply linking to it as this week’s contribution to Translational Ecology.

Bill Schlesinger

You can find his post at:

2 thoughts on “Global Impoverishment

  1. (Edited for greater clarity–WHS)

    Lovely read. It’s the principle of the thing. We give more meaning to our own lives and to all of humanity when we work to save and live with nature’s most vulnerable.

  2. (Edited for length–WHS)

    Thanks, Brian. In Michigan, where I volunteer to help manage Michigan Nature Association’s sanctuaries, we have a few populations of Poweshieks. How long they can resist the coming climate changes is an open question. In Maine, the offshore Northern Right Whales produced no young this year. The loss of either species would be a tragedy, and the accelerating disappearance of biodiversity may prove to be the greatest disaster in history.

    No doubt the urbanization of human life is the dominant proximate cause of declining familiarity with Nature. But it may not be the main cause of attacks on or lack of support for wildlife protection measures. The latter is, in the United States, a product of the rightward movement of politics over the last half-century. This backlash has gained power and control, thus far culminating in the present regime which openly rejects and attacks nearly all liberal values and policies including environmentalism.

    The power of the national government is so great as to make or break nearly all efforts to implement environmentally sane policy. Therefore, if there is to be much hope of changing the present course, we will have to get enough environmentally sympathetic people into office to control the policy. Environmental education of the young and old is a necessary supplement but it is not enough.

    Thanks for your article, your concern, and your work. Ken Ross

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