Life on Earth is likely facing its sixth mass extinction. The UN Environment Programme estimates that 150 to 200 species of plant, insect, bird or mammal become extinct every day – about 1,000 times the “natural rate,” according to some biologists.
So how can we stop extinction?
One solution scientists have been developing for decades is de-extinction — the process of resurrecting extinct species through genetic engineering. The idea was made popular when an ancient mosquito with a bellyful of dinosaur DNA enabled the resurrection of a Tyrannosaurus rex in 1993’s Jurassic Park. But now that de-extinction could soon be a viable option for biodiversity conservation, some researchers are saying it could threaten extant endangered species.
An article published recently in Natural Ecology and Evolution explains how spending money to resurrect extinct species would reduce already-strained conservation resources for currently endangered species.
“On one hand, we can bring back the dead and right past wrongs,” study co-author Joseph Bennett, a conservation biologist at Carleton University in Canada, said to Popular Science. “On the other hand, there are many species going extinct every year, and our resources to help save them are severely limited.”
The study predicts how much money it would take to conserve a handful of resurrected species by looking at the real conservation costs of similar endangered species in New Zealand and New South Wales. Even though the estimates didn’t factor in the costs of actually resurrecting the species, the study found that conserving resurrected species would be significantly more expensive than conserving endangered species.
Current Time 0:00
Duration Time 0:00
Remaining Time -0:00
- descriptions off, selected
- subtitles off, selected
- captions settings, opens captions settings dialog
- captions off, selected
This is a modal window.
Caption Settings Dialog
Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.
Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadow
Font FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall Caps
‘Hey Bill Nye, Which Extinct Animal Would You Like to See Alive Again?’
The Science Guy
I have a crazy passion for #music, #celebrity #news & #fashion! I'm always out and about on Twitter.
Latest posts by Sasha Harriet (see all)
- Dwayne Johnson Sweetly Responds to Fan’s Promposal — Watch! - April 21, 2018
- ‘Jane the Virgin’ Boss Breaks Down the Big Season 4 Finale Telenovela Twist - April 21, 2018
- Natalie Portman speaks out after snubbing an Israeli ‘Nobel’ prize - April 21, 2018
More from Around the Web