12 Feb '18, 10am

In Defense of Biodiversity: Why Protecting Species from Extinction Matters

In Defense of Biodiversity: Why Protecting Species from Extinction Matters

Pyron’s essay – with lines such as, “The only reason we should conserve biodiversity is for ourselves, to create a stable future for human beings” and “[T]he impulse to conserve for conservation’s sake has taken on an unthinking, unsupported, unnecessary urgency” – left the impression that it was written in a conservative think tank, perhaps by one of the anti-regulatory zealots now filling posts throughout the Trump administration. Pyron’s sentiments weren’t merely oddly out of keeping with the legacy of the man whose name graces his job title. Much of what Pyron wrote is scientifically inaccurate. And where he stepped out of his field into ethics, what he wrote was conceptually confused. Pyron has since posted, on his website and Facebook page, 1,100 words of frantic backpedaling that land somewhere between apology and retraction, including mea culpas that he “sensationa...

Full article: http://e360.yale.edu/features/in-defense-of-biodiversity-...

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