As a professional tree-hugger I try to question the work I’m involved in and the motives behind it. I’ve thought long and hard about the hows, whys and wherefores and am still unsure of lots of the answers. Here are a few thoughts to mull over:
Why should humans bother protecting other species or habitats at all?
To what extent should humans intervene with nature in order to bring about our own goals, and by what ‘right’ do we intervene?
Is it acceptable to protect a species or habitat at the cost of human development?
If one rare and protected species survives by eating another rare, protected species, what are you supposed to do?
Are some species more worthy of protection than others?
In trying to answer these seemingly basic questions you very rapidly go from biology and ecology to much bigger issues of morality and philosophy, and people from different cultural backgrounds or points of view will give wildly differing answers. So, how do we decide who’s right, and how do we decide how to go about saving this planet that we’re single-handedly ruining?
Stormy times ahead