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I'm a Conservative Troglodyte who puts more emphasis on common sense rather than political parties.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2004

You've got homework...

BY now you probably have had a brief glance at that article that miraculously appeared in every major newspaper across the globe all in the same day. It was almost like a press release was issued or something to that effect (wink, wink).

I’m referring to the Dr. Cagan Sekercioglu piece that implies that you won’t have to worry about the paint job on your car in 100 years. Apparently, Dr. Sekercioglu has 10% of the bird species going the way of the Raphus Cucullatus(Dodo) by the end of that time frame. Wow, 10% ! That’s a lot, isn’t it?

Is it?

You have homework my friends. Your reading assignment is THE SKEPTICAL ENVIRONMENTALIST (Measuring the Real State of the World
By Bjorn Lomborg). Your focus will be birds.

Here’s a teaser:


“The Exxon Valdez oil spill was portrayed as a disaster of unparalleled magnitude: For example, it killed 250,000 birds.”


But did you know:


“Some 300,000 birds are killed by mammals, mostly cats, in Great Britain every 48 hours, and 250,000 birds die from striking plate glass in homes and offices in the United States every 24 hours.”

Yeah, but that Dr. Sekercioglu is claiming that the decline in birds directly relates to deforestation and loss of habitat.

But:

“Or consider deforestation. It's been claimed that the world has lost two-thirds of its forests since the dawn of agriculture. The real figure, Lomborg shows, is around 20 percent, and this figure has hardly changed since the World War II. Tropical forests are declining at a small annual rate of 0.46 percent, but this is offset by growth in commercial plantations, which should be encouraged, as their products take the pressure off the tropical forests. In fact, the world's wood and paper needs could be permanently satisfied by tree plantations amounting to just 5 percent of the world's forest cover.”


Read up folks…Then we’ll talk about the New York American Museum of Natural History’s claim that predicted that up to one-fifth of all living species could disappear within 30 years. After a break, we’ll dicuss PBS’s slant that as much as 30 percent of the world's animals and plants could be on a path to extinction within 100 years. A brief lunch, and we’ll jump right to Dr. Donald A. Levin’s belief that Half of all living bird and mammal species will be gone within 200 or 300 years. Ah, we’re not done, we have a round table discourse set up with those scientists attending the 1999 International Botanical Congress who estimated within 100 years between one-third and two-thirds of all birds, animals, plants and other species will be lost.

How about the UN? We can’t leave them out of this. That fine upstanding symbol of integrity tells us that almost a quarter of the world's mammals face extinction within 30 years, according to their report on the state of the global environment.

Yes sir. Read Dr. Lomborg’s book, and then we’ll face the myriad “experts” listed above and see if the word Kyoto pops up during the conversation…

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