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Fate of the Wild

Bonnie B. Burgess

Publication Year: 2001

Given widespread concern over the worldwide loss of biodiversity and popular crusades to "save" endangered species and habitats, why has the Endangered Species Act remained unauthorized since October 1992? In Fate of the Wild Bonnie B. Burgess offers an illuminating assembly of facts about biodiversity and straightforward analysis of the legislative stalemate surrounding the Endangered Species Act. Fate of the Wild surveys the history of and analyzes the conflict over the legislation itself, the heated issues regarding its enforcement, and the land-use and habitat battles waged between conservationists, environmental activists, and private property proponents.

Burgess's meticulous and exhaustive research makes Fate of the Wild a valuable resource for professionals in conservation biology, public policy, environmental law, and environmental organizations, while the narrative clarity of the book will appeal to anyone interested in the fate of nonhuman species.

Burgess explains how wilderness has been consumed by concrete and asphalt, the effects of toxins on plants and animals, strip mine tailings, oil slicks, and smog. She exposes, as well, the "invisible" damage that manifests itself in the subtle degradation of natural systems and in the increased incidence and number of diseases, the rise in human infertility, and the drastic alteration of weather patterns and landscapes.

Fate of the Wild presents a factual and balanced discussion of the various sides of the contemporary debate over the Endangered Species Act, alongside the author's clearly stated position: We are overpopulating, polluting, and overdeveloping our environment, and as a species we have embarked on a crash course toward a sixth great extinction event on this Earth.

Published by: University of Georgia Press

Cover

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pp. C-1-

Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-x

By the time I started pursuing my interest in wilderness and wildlife in the early 1990s, I understood that the diversity of the world is part of the wonder of God. So this book was a collaborative process between God and me. She...

Abbreviations

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pp. xi-xii

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Introduction

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pp. xiii-xx

People are damaging the earth that sustains us and millions of other species at a greater rate than nature can replenish it. Visible evidence abounds; but some of the most alarming indicators are invisible to the average person: these...

Part One. Setting the Stage

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Chapter 1: History of the Endangered Species Act

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pp. 3-19

The endangered species act of 1973 (ESA) makes a strong, unequivocal statement of national policy on species protection [ jj 153 l(b)]: "to provide a means whereby the ecosystems upon which endangered species and threatened...

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Chapter 2: The Endangered Species Act Today

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pp. 20-28

After two decades of change through congressional amendments and judicial decisions, the Endangered Species Act of 1973 has remained unauthorized since October 1992. This is the longest it has languished since its...

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Chapter 3: The Importance of Biodiversity

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pp. 29-44

The word biodiversity, the shortened form of biological diversity, was introduced by Dr. Thomas Lovejoy at the first Forum on Biodiversity in September 1986. Biodiversity is a descriptive word and one that is relatively easy to...

Part Two. Characters

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Chapter 4: Protagonists and the Environmental Argument

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pp. 47-60

Now that the stage is set, it is time to meet the characters of the endangered species drama. The protagonists—the people fighting for a strengthened ESA—are led by environmental and conservation organizations that...

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Chapter 5: Antagonists and the Private Property Rights Argument

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pp. 61-74

Private property rights advocates lead the movement to stop ESA intrusion into the plans and decisions of private landowners. Societal reaction to the Endangered Species Act and other environmental protection statutes that demand...

Part Three. Conflict

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Chapter 6: In the Halls of Congress

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pp. 77-102

The political environment has not been friendly to the ESA since it lapsed in October 1992. The Democratic 102nd Congress (1991- 92), aware of political forces desiring to weaken the law, avoided bringing reauthorization to the floor. Authorizations...

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Chapter 7: Presidential Power

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pp. 103-111

Presidential politics have significantly influenced the implementation of the Endangered Species Act. Presidential attitudes toward the ESA have varied from one administration to the next and have often confounded the...

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Chapter 8: The Bureaucratic Contribution

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pp. 112-129

The first Fish and Wildlife Service director to have Endangered Species Act enforcement responsibilities was Lynn Greenwalt. He summarized the challenge he and his successors have faced: balancing the statute's power to disrupt...

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Chapter 9: Species Economics

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pp. 130-148

NO discussion of environmental policy would be complete without looking at the economic factors. The economics of endangered species is a complex topic. Some claim the ESA has put thousands of people out of jobs in...

Part Four. Resolution

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Chapter 10: Ecosystem Management

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pp. 151-169

In 1987, the Office of Technology Assessment estimated that at least twenty-eight federal laws address the maintenance of biodiversity in some form. These authorities are enforced by a multitude of federal agencies with little or no interagency...

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Chapter 11: Antidote

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pp. 170-190

From small and homely species to large and majestic ones, from tropical rain forests to desert scrublands to Arctic tundra, all life forms and ecosystems have bearing on the survival of the earth and therefore on the survival of...

References

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pp. 191-200

Index

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pp. 201-211


E-ISBN-13: 9780820340241
E-ISBN-10: 0820340243
Print-ISBN-13: 9780820322964
Print-ISBN-10: 0820322962

Page Count: 232
Publication Year: 2001

Research Areas

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Subject Headings

  • Modernism (Literature).
  • American fiction -- 19th century -- History and criticism.
  • Realism in literature.
  • American fiction -- 20th century -- History and criticism.
  • Literature and photography -- United States.
  • Visual perception in literature.
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