The Birds and the Bees The urgency of wildlife conservation in an industrial world

The exploitation of wildlife has led to increased industry and economic growth but taken a toll on the natural environment.

More attention must be paid to the effects of increased industrial growth on the surrounding wildlife and an effort should be made to protect this wildlife.

Threats to Wildlife

Destruction of habitat as a result of growing industry

The Amur Leopard, Orangutan, Bonobo, and Asian Elephant are all threatened by the destruction of their natural habitats
“We have lost one half of the animal population and knowing this is driven by human consumption, this is clearly a call to arms and we must act now” -Mike Barratt, U.S. Astronaut

The increase of economic growth is often a valid indicator of biodiversity loss

(Czech 99)

Industry leads to the decline in biodiversity, often through changing natural habitats

The graph shows that about 44% of the decline in wildlife is due to either habitat loss or change.

Why maintain biodiversity?

Ecosystems rely on different species to perform different tasks and supply energy at different levels of the food chain.

All different species contribute to the well-being of the rest of the community ("food web").

The plants and microscopic life have an impact on every other part of the food chain.

Malaysian Rubber Industry

Rubber plantations to be classified as forests

400,000 ha have been given for use as rubber plantations by the Malaysian minister of agriculture (Phnom 1)

In Malaysia, rubber plantations can now be classified as forests under the UN Food and Agriculture Organization

(Phnom 1)

Deforestation in Indonesia

Indonesia contributes to much of the deforestation across Southeast Asia with the development of palm oil plantations.

The establishment and maintenence of palm oil plantations lead to increased deforestation and increased carbon emissions

Rain-forests are often cleared and sometimes burned to build palm oil plantations

("Palm Oil & Forest Conversion")

"The tropical rain forest is one thousand times more biologically complex than the tropical reef system, the second most complex system on Earth, with one million times greater biodiversity than our own ecosystem here." - Mike Robinson, Director of the U.S. National Zoo

East Siberia-Pacific Ocean Pipeline

Rerouting the pipeline to protect endangered wildlife

In 2007 the World Wildlife Foundation convinced the Russian Government to reroute the planned oil pipeline that threatened the leopard's habitat

(Bonello 1)

Perevoznaya Bay was considered as a pumping station and is also home to Siberian Tigers and Amur Leopards

(Bonello 1)

The pipeline shows that there are ways in which industry can develop and have minimal impact on the surrounding wildlife.


The Cost

Many people believe that the expense of changing the growth of industries in order to save wildlife is too high

It has been estimated that the cost of protecting threatened land animals could approach $76 million

(Marshall 1)

Many times the cost of adjusting business practices is also an inhibitor of change

However, the cost of losing species on the environment the cost that companies and the government face in order to preserve wildlife

Many species provide "ecosystem services" which contribute to the overall health of the ecosystem and performs functions necessary for human life

The Solution

Consumers hold the power to change the ways of big business

In a capitalistic society consumers control what businesses produce.

Businesses must work to ensure consumers chose their product over others


Created with images by Peter Blanchard - "Deforestation"

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