This isn’t new. Richard Leakey wrote a book. The Sixth Extinction. Somebody sabotaged his plane. He recovered and was a news story for a while. He annoyed everybody for being white, Kenyan, and African. If you are black in Europe it isn’t a big deal. If you are a white African you have a shoot me automatically painted on your arse and your forehead. Silly isn’t it? Leakey did nothing wrong but say what he thought. In Kenya that means getting your plane sabotaged. His book? It’s out there. But you have to look for it.
The BBC is announcing this new extinction as news. If universities announce it as news that makes it news. Anybody with eyes and common sense has known this is an ongoing thing. We are too many. We are.
One of the best books written on extinction was Last chance to See. Douglas Adams, Mark Carwardine.
Funny. Heartbreaking. Wise. Now largely un-read. It’s an old book. Like Leakey’s book. “The darker it gets the faster we drive.” Adams is dead and everybody knows him as the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy man. Not as a conservationist. Mark is alive and well. There was a chemistry to their book.
Wildlife conservation shouldn’t be boring. It shouldn’t be side-lined. If we are in the planet’s most catastrophic extinction phase since the dinos took a tumble we ought to think about it.
I remember a book reviewer in Time Out. He was trendy, Cool Britannia, amazed, appalled, suddenly informed and he dressed like a Misty Minx ad. “One day!” he wrote “We’ll be extinct!”
In his case the sooner the better! What a dweeb!
The problem with this current extinction is that it is not terribly obvious. It happens and it doesn’t do it in a sound bite. It’s there nibbling away. On the upside there are millions of people on board and caring and stopping the horror of a lonely planet with only people on it. There are a couple of billion people who think eating anything that’s very rare will give them a surge of voodoo vitality.
Enough from me. Let the BBC take over! Their turn!Read more: