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Margaret Mead, American anthropologist, 1901-1978

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Mapping Earth’s Species will pinpoint Conservation Priorities

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The Half Earth Project has launched the first phrase of their rather incredible global biodiversity map.  It uses the latest science and technology to map thousands of species worldwide.   And it shows where future conservation efforts should be made to best care for our planet and ourselves.

The rate at which species are becoming extinct by human activity continues to increase to such an extent that it may eliminate half the species by the end of this century.  E.O.Wilson commented in the New York Times Sunday Review  on 3 March that we have to enlarge the area of earth devoted to the natural world enough to save the variety of life in it.

Conservation scientists widely agree that we should keep half the land and half the sea on the planet as wild and protected from human activity and intervention as possible, Wilson also states.

The Half Earth Project  is providing vital and urgent research, leadership and knowledge necessary to do just his.   It’s mapping the distribution of species worldwide to show where we can protected the greatest number of species.  Once it’s been possible to identify the blocks of land and sea can be strung together for greatest effect, tit will be possible to support these places, home to both wildlife and people.

It is hoped that the map for most terrestrial, marine and freshwater plant and animal species will be complete within 5 years.

E.O.Wilson Biodiveristy Foundation Board member Jeff Ubben and his wife Laurie are giving or have given $5 million to seed the second phrase.  

The map will give us the information required to make strong conservation investments. 


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