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Sunday, April 22, 2007

George Wright Society

Last week I attended the George Wright Society conference in downtown St. Paul, MN. The George Wright Society is for natural resource managers and interpreters. As far as I can tell most of the members are federal employees of agencies like the National Park Service and the Fish and Wildlife Service.

Things that struck me:
  • Climate Change is freakin pee-your-pants scary.

  • We need to make natural areas as healthy and diverse as possible to enable them to adapt efficiently to new climates

  • We are going to lose lots of species, especially at the poles and high elevations.

  • Resource managers are a remarkably competent group of folks.

Climate Change is scary scary scary. The theme of the whole conference was "Rethinking protected areas in a changing world." Dr. Lisa Graumlich and Harvey Locke each gave plenary talks about climate change, its undeniably human causes, and about how we are entering into a new analog world. Listen to a Minnesota Public Radio interview with Dr. Graumlich about this: link.

I went to sessions that focused on individual species and habitats, international cooperation, and geologic history of climate change, all of which are topics worthy of their own posts. If you want to know more email me.

The amazing part is despite the vast power-sucking nature of this potential global disaster resource managers are standing their ground staring the climate change right into its beady little eyes. There's no shirking going on here.

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