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iWild: For more see iWild.org

Dan Janzen on "The Real Killer of Conservation"

“Apathy is the real killer of conservation. You know, I’m 71 years old. So I’ve seen [biodiversity] go from vibrancy all around us — wild forests everywhere — to trashed and void landscapes in my lifetime. So I remember what it was like when there was primary forest right up to the side of the road, on 50 percent of the roads in Costa Rica. Today there’s none — it’s all gone. The only piece of intact forest on a paved road in Costa Rica is 22 hectares. And that piece is the only piece between the Panama Canal and Mazatlan, Mexico. Which I can say with authority because I have driven all of those roads. Now, the next generation — the one that’s got the laptops and the iPods and the Google access — has not seen that. The landscape you see today is their ground zero. This creates apathy of two kinds. One is they don’t have any idea what could be there. They don’t have any idea of what they, themselves, could be seeing, or what they could have in their backyard. What this does, of course, is creates for them a world where the biodiversity they are exposed to is that which they get electronically. The butterfly’s only a picture on your laptop screen.”
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