[Taxacom] eol in NYT

Paul Kirk p.kirk at cabi.org
Fri Sep 7 02:34:05 CDT 2007

but it will ...

To follow on from the contribution from Rich ... if we do not have to
repeat what others have done already and what others are also
concurrently repeating, and if all that we require to carry out our
existing work is much more efficiently available then 'we' will have
more time to do what we all want to do - discover the remaining 90
percent. Maybe I'm an optimist, but I'm right behind the cheerleader
(but leave out the pom-poms).


Dr Paul M. Kirk
CABI UK Centre (Egham)
Bakeham Lane
TW20 9TY
United Kingdom

Telephone: +44 (0) 1491 829023
Fax: +44 (0) 1491 829100
Email: p.kirk at cabi.org
Visit us at www.cabi.org; www.indexfungorum.org

Please consider the environment before printing this e-mail.

CABI improves people's lives worldwide by providing
information and applying scientific expertise to solve
problems in agriculture and the environment

-----Original Message-----
From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
[mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Bob Mesibov
Sent: 07 September 2007 05:28
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] eol in NYT

Professor Wilson's OpEd piece in the New York Times is well-intentioned
but there's a logical hole in it.

He gets the reader worried by ringing the usual bells, like
"Human-caused climate change alone could eliminate a quarter of species
during the next five decades" and "What will we and future generations
lose if a large part of the living environment continues to disappear?"

Next, he claims that "[EOL] should make it possible to discover the
remaining 90 percent of species in far less than 250 years, perhaps only
one-tenth that time, a single human generation", and that "[EOL] will
accelerate the discovery of the unknown species".

Excuse me? How does compiling information about known species make it
more likely that unknown biodiversity gets discovered? How does sitting
in an office playing with bioinformatics tell you anything about life
you haven't found yet, out there in nature? How exactly does funding for
EOL translate into funding for fieldwork?

More importantly, how would EOL shift survey and sampling priorities to
those places where biodiversity is disappearing fastest?

Nice promotional piece, but it doesn't help the worldwide biodiversity
salvage effort, still in its infancy. 
Dr Robert Mesibov
Honorary Research Associate, Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery and
School of Zoology, University of Tasmania
Contact: PO Box 101, Penguin, Tasmania, Australia 7316
(03) 64371195; 61 3 64371195

Australian millipedes checklist
Tasmanian multipedes
Spatial data basics for Tasmania
Biodiversity salvage blog

Taxacom mailing list
Taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
The information contained in this e-mail and any files transmitted with it is confidential and is for the exclusive use of the intended recipient. If you are not the intended recipient please note that any distribution, copying or use of this communication or the information in it is prohibited. 

Whilst CAB International trading as CABI takes steps to prevent the transmission of viruses via e-mail, we cannot guarantee that any e-mail or attachment is free from computer viruses and you are strongly advised to undertake your own anti-virus precautions.

If you have received this communication in error, please notify us by e-mail at cabi at cabi.org or by telephone on +44 (0)1491 829199 and then delete the e-mail and any copies of it.

CABI is an International Organization recognised by the UK Government under Statutory Instrument 1982 No. 1071.


More information about the Taxacom mailing list