16 March 2008

EO Wilson: "We need an expedition to planet Earth"

Yesterday's Financial Times gives us this gem:
“Humanity doesn’t need a moon-base or a manned trip to Mars,” writes Wilson in his recent book, The Creation. “We need an expedition to planet Earth, where probably fewer than 10 per cent of species are known to science, and fewer than 1 per cent of those have been studied beyond a simple anatomical description and a few notes on natural history.” At the same time, we are engaged in a genocide against those species, known and unknown; “the sixth mass extinction has begun”.
Enter the new Beagle as a symbolic flagship for a new era of wind-powered Earth exploration, needed now more than ever. I've sent a couple of emails to the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Foundation, asking whether they might fund just such an expedition to planet Earth, but, as yet, no reply...

And before I sign off, it must be said that space exploration has its place too, especially when astronauts and satellites turn their cameras towards Earth. But maybe I'm biased.

Hat tip to Bill.

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