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Byron Shire
April 11, 2021

Responsibility for preserving species

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Keith Duncan, Pimlico After the tumultuous events of the past weeks regarding alleged sexual assaults within the Liberal Party and...

Lindy Stacker, Binna Burra

I needed to take a few deep yoga breaths before responding to Warren Kennedy’s letter. Mr Kennedy’s assertion that the Shire need not take responsibility for endangered species re the Byron bypass requires a rational, heartfelt rebuttal.

I challenge Mr Kennedy’s belief that humanity shouldn’t be responsible for preserving every species. We are responsible for massive species destruction. Therefore we have an increasing responsibility to redress the mess we’ve created.

Extinction was part of the natural order, but now our arrogant and self-centred species has taken control over nature’s previous wisdom. We are in the sixth mass extinction. This was not created by nature but by us, just as climate change is being created by us.

The UN recently warned that a million species will soon be extinct; this will have catastrophic consequences for every living species/plant life on the planet. This therefore does require ‘us’ to feel responsible for all species.

Our plummeting koala populations are a stark example of our inability to protect dwindling habitat, necessary for our koalas’ survival. Our government agencies have failed our wildlife in every instance and our environmental laws must be ripped up. As many scientists have declared we must repeal the EPBC (Environment Protection Biodiversity Conservation) Act and start again. This time to implement laws that put ecological interests before economic interests.

Over the past three years endangered species have increased by 30 per cent in Australia as land clearing has skyrocketed by 244 per cent. We are ‘managing species into extinction’. Remember each day that Earth does not belong to us, we belong to Earth.

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