Since the beginning of all species, it is estimated that between one and four billion animal species have been driven to extinction. Some were destroyed by natural causes, such as the disasters, but others were hunted off and killed by humans. In fact, there are only six species of rhinos alive today, and one is nearly extinct.
Something has been discovered that can change all that, though. The Long Now foundation has genetic samples of extinct animals that they believe can be brought back from the dead, and once again be alive! The steps to this are difficult. Beth Shapiro, a scientist studying ancient DNA, explains them in simplified steps and talks about the challenges of de-extinction.
This idea is certainly exciting, but is it what we should be focusing on now? This technology could be used to fix other problems going on in the world, so why this, and why now? I also watched part of a talk from an environmental standpoint, which I was sadly unable to find on YouTube.
The speaker touched upon a couple of points and quetions:
- Is this the most important thing to spend money on?
- Will de-extinction undermine the conservation of endangered species today?
- Is it even possible?
- Technology like this could be used to fix other problems. (But will it?)
I hope this post leaves you with lots to think about. Please share your opinions below- I’d love to discuss with anybody interested! For more information, go to http://longnow.org/revive/
- 5 Reasons to Bring Back Extinct Animals (And 5 Reasons Not To) (blogs.discovermagazine.com)
- Is De-extinction of Animals Coming? (ieet.org)
- Will We Kill Off Today’s Animals If We Revive Extinct Ones? (scientificamerican.com)
- De-Extinction Could Bring Back 24 Different Species: Resurrecting the Woolly Mammoth (scienceworldreport.com)