Addressing Climate Change Will Not “Save the Planet”

A boiler tower is surrounded by mirrors at the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in the Mojave Desert on August 26, 2022 near Nipton, California.

Conservation biology finds itself in a terrifying place today, witness to mass extinction, helpless to stop the march of industrial Homo sapiens, the pillage of habitat, the loss of wildlands, and the impoverishment of ecosystems. Many of its leading figures are in despair. “I’m 40 years into conservation biology and I can tell you we are losing badly, getting our asses kicked,” Dan Ashe, director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service under President Barack Obama, told me recently. “There are almost no reasons to be optimistic.”

Ashe suggests that conservation biologists cease the empty claims about “saving the planet” with climate mitigation and start speaking truth: There is at present no plan, in any country, anywhere, on a global or national scale, to address extinctions, biodiversity crash, and habitat loss. The dismal reality is that with a green build-out, we will be saving not the complex web of life on Earth but the particular way of life of one privileged domineering species that depends for its success on a nature-ravaging network of technological marvels. Only once this truth is understood can honest decisions be made about what kind of world humanity wishes to inhabit in the age of ecological disorder.

Source: Addressing Climate Change Will Not “Save the Planet”

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