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Why Biodiversity is Important to Solving Climate Chaos: Top 10 Reasons

Having jump-started my career as a conservation biologist riding the 1980s explosion of scientific and public interest in biodiversity, I have progressively witnessed how biophilia has given way to climate change concerns with the public, decision makers, scientists, and philanthropists (who have increasingly moved funding out of biodiversity and into climate change). In the meantime, we have lost sight of why biodiversity is critical to solving climate chaos.
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Exporting No Net Loss

The concept of “no net loss” of wetlands, first officially endorsed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 1990, continues to spread across the globe. The latest example is Taiwan’s national Wetland Conservation Act, enacted in July 2013 after five years of discussions. The new law adopts the objective of “no net loss” of area and function for wetlands designated as locally, nationally, or internationally important.
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Where Were the Forests in the President’s Speech?

On June 25, President Obama delivered his most significant speech on climate change. “As a president, as a father, and as an American,” he stated, “I am here to say, we need to act. . . . I refuse to condemn your generation and future generations to a planet that’s beyond fixing.”
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Benefit of thinning forests for spotted owls is not so clear-cut

The July 26 editorial "Logging for spotted owls" dismisses decades of scientific research by touting one new study that suggests "heavy thinning" (aka, clear-cut lite) of forests could benefit spotted owls. Based on a single computer simulation, the new study suggests that intensive logging will magically prevent "catastrophic fires" such as the Biscuit that "wiped out" owls and other wildlife. This is unfounded.
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Ghost Trees

The standing dead trees were everywhere, their boles weathered silver where the bark had peeled. The carcasses of their fallen comrades littered the understory, with few aspen sprouting from the deadfall. The occasional mangled saplings we observed provided graphic evidence of heavy elk browsing.
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Forests at Risk: Real and Personal

As I gathered with other concerned Coloradans for the “Forests at Risk” symposium in Aspen, Colorado last week, the importance of climate change and forests became immediately clear with the absence of two key speakers.