28 Feb '14, 2pm

In “The Sixth Extinction,” Elizabeth Kolbert reports from the frontlines of a dying world

In “The Sixth Extinction,” Elizabeth Kolbert reports from the frontlines of a dying world

That was really, to me, emblematic of this crazy situation we find ourselves in. We’re incredibly smart, we’ve figured out how to freeze cell lines and quite possibly bring back extinct animals — we’re willing to pleasure crows. And yet, the Hawaiian Islands are called the extinction capital of the planet — it’s an absolutely devastated ecosystem. Many, many birds are extinct already; those that aren’t are just clinging to existence. Those forces are not changing and, in fact, things are getting worse. There used to be no mosquitoes in Hawaii; there are now mosquitoes. They carry avian malaria, and as the climate warms, avian malaria is moving up the slopes so that even these refugees species that are high on the mountains are increasingly not there. A lot of birds are in terrible trouble there.

Full article: http://grist.org/climate-energy/in-the-sixth-extinction-e...

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