April 13, 2017
As the current presidential administration rolls back numerous environmental regulations, Senior Sustainability Scientist Leah Gerber considers the consequences of losing the Endangered Species Act – another item queued for the chopping block.
In an April 2017 commentary in Christian Science Monitor titled "Is the endangered species act facing extinction?," Gerber touts the services biodiversity provides us - among them, food, medicine, clean water and air. Not only do these enhance rather than impede our lifestyle, in Gerber's opinion, the plants and animals that make up our ecosystems enrich our lives in ways often ascribed to art.
According to Gerber, who directs ASU's Center for Biodiversity Outcomes, these benefits provide solid ground for a bipartisan effort to strengthen the ESA's ability to protect endangered species rather than to limit or invalidate it.
"For those species that we deem worthy of protection, we must promote their recovery and be willing to pay for it," Gerber writes. "For the losing species, we need to prepare for the consequences of their disappearance from Earth."