FAIR 332A, Spring 1996 Current Environmental Topics:

THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION

Meeting times: Mon. & Wed., 10-12 Location: FC 312

Instructor: G. Myers, PhD.

Office Hours:

Mon., 1:00-2:30pm; Wed, 12-1:00, Fairhaven 332; or appointment; 650-3016

Tues. 2:00-5:00pm, AH 224; or appointment; 650-4775. Mail stop: 9085

Internet: gmyers@henson.cc.wwu.edu

Purpose and overview

This course challenges us to consider the problem of species loss in a holistic and multifaceted manner. Indeed, in its full scope, the boundaries of the problem of biodiversity today (and moreso, tomorrow) are co-extensive with our life-patterns. We will delimit the topic by attending especially to the Endangered Species Act (ESA), though contemporary discussions range widely also. The ESA is virtually unique in history, as are the conflicts it has spawned.

Around this focal point hover a myriad of questions. Some are scientific. Some are political and economic; and underlying many debates are important philosophical and ethical questions. Do the state and sociology of our knowledge about this issue permit definitive statements? In what cases? In what conditions of risk and uncertainty? In the context of what rhetorical framings of the questions?

We will start the course with some wide-ranging encounters with the issue that will tap different levels of our responses. We will move into some scientific topics, and simulate important experiments. A major portion of the course will deal with policy issues - the conflicts and various stakeholders who are involved, but also the rhetoric of the debates. Finally, value questions will be a focus, especially toward the end of the course.

Clearly much is at stake in this issue. It merits nothing less than the most careful and sustained intellectual attention we can give it - as students (small 'S'!) and citizens. Let us strive to make our class a collaborative community for exploring these important issues.

Requirements

-Regular attendance and well-prepared participation in class. Preparation includes carefully reading the articles for the session placed in the large notebook in the Fairhaven Library. You must have the content of the article available for recall during class. This means taking precise notes, or at a minimum, copying the article and bringing it to class.

-At least 2 individual conferences with the instructor

-Staying current on recent developments in the issue. One major means for this is monitoring the internet. Each person is asked to choose a site or list to check regularly.

-Become an expert in one species, and write about it. Each person is to choose one species and learn about its biology (as relevant to conservation), and about the policy issues surrounding it (this part is crucial; some species are better choices in this regard than others; note also that policy includes the value presuppositions of different positions). We will discuss species choices soon. This will require substantial library research, and probably corresponding with others by phone and internet. The written product will be due in stages, to be assembled as a final paper of at least 10 pages. Instructions will be provided soon. I expect the very best you, as an individual writer, can do.

-Consultation with our Writing Center Assistants at different phases of writing.

 

ADDENDUM - GUEST SPEAKERS:

April 8 - John Gilstrum, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Public Information

May 7 - Brian Vincent, Northwest Ecosystem Alliance

May 20 - David Hirsh & Craig Hansen, US Fish & Wildlife Service, Habitat Conservation Planning

May 29 - Bill Pickell, Washington Contract Loggers Association

 

READINGS FOR APR 10 & 15

INTRODUCTION TO ISSUES:

Le Guin, U. (1990). "Buffalo gals, Won't you come out tonight?" In Buffalo gals, and other animal presences. New York: ROC.

-Native American origin myth as fiction

Yoon, C. K. (1994). "Rare butterfly consigned to extinction." New York Times Apr. 26 1994, B5-6.

-conflict over a "basket case" species

Ehrlich, P. & Ehrlich, A. (1981). Extinction: The causes and consequences of the disappearance of species. "The rivet poppers."

-an influential metaphor

Humphrey, S. (1985). "How species become vulnerable to extinction, and how we can meet the crisis." In R. J. Hoage (Ed.), Animal extinctions: What everyone should know (pp. 9-29). Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution Press.

-accessible summary of main factors

READINGS FOR APR 17

WHAT IS A SPECIES?:

Review definition of species in ESA, Sec. 3

Guzzo, L. & Ray, D. L. (1993). Endangered Species: Are we running out of animals? In Environmental overkill: Whatever happened to common sense? (pp. 81-91. ) Washington DC: Regnery Gateway.

Herreid, C. F. (1977). Biology. New York: MacMillan. "The science of systematics" pp. 68-70

-background on current system of classification

Linneaeus, C. "System of Nature"

-a few pages from the classic typological theory

Lakoff, G. (1987). Women, Fire and Dangerous things. "Brown and Berlin: Glimpses of the Basic Level" (pp. 31-38). Chicago: Univ. of Chicago.

-a discussion of some philosophical and psychological dimensions of human categorization, centered on the topic of species.

Raven, P. H., Berlin, B & Breedlove, D. (1971). "The origins of taxonomy." Science 174:1210-1213.

-an important consideration of taxonomy in relation to conservation.

"Species classification - figure 1," from Doyen and Slobodchikoff (1974). "An operational approach to species classification" Systematic Zoology 23(2): 239-47).

Reprinted in Slobodchikoff, C. N. (Ed.) (1976). Concepts of species. Benchmark Papers in Systematic and Evolutionary Biology/3. Stroudsburg, PA: Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, Inc.

-how do biologists recognize a species in the field?

Mayr, E. (1957). "Species concepts and definitions." In E. Mayr (Ed.) The species problem. Am. Assoc. for the Advancement of Science Publications, 50: 1-22.

Reprinted in Slobodchikoff, C. N. (Ed.) (1976). Concepts of species. Benchmark Papers in Systematic and Evolutionary Biology/3. Stroudsburg, PA: Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, Inc.

-important review by the originator of the modern biological species concept.

Wilcove, D., McMillan, M. & Winston, C. (1993). "What exactly is an endangered species? An analysis of the U. S. Endangered Species List." Conservation Biology 7(1): 87-93.

-important analysis of answering accusations that ESA lists many subspecies

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (1995). "Notice of determination to retain the threatened status for the Coastal California Gnatcatcher." Federal Register 60(58): 15693-99. Mar. 27, 1995.

-an unusual case where the biological basis of a listing was challenged: read summary; background; and Issue 4, which starts on bottom of p. 15695, through 15699.

READINGS FOR APRIL 22

EXTINCTION:

Wilson, E. (1992). The diversity of life. Ch 12, Biodiversity threatened (pp. 243-280). New York: Norton.

Lugo, A. (1988). Estimating reductions in the diversity of tropical forest species. In E. Wilson (Ed.), Biodiversity (pp. 58-70). Washington DC: National Academy Press.

Simon, J. & Wildavsky, A. (1992). Species loss revisited. Society 30 (Nov-Dec.):41-46.

-Besides giving good background, these readings present a controversy about how species are defined and counted, and about the nature of extinction rate estimates.

READINGS FOR APRIL 24 & 29

EXTINCTION RISK AND MINIMUM POPULATION SIZE:

Shaffer, M. (1981). Minimum population sizes for species conservation. BioScience 31 (2):131-34.

National Research Council (1995). Science and the Endangered Species Act. Ch 7, Estimiting risk (pp. 124-147). Washington DC: National Academy Press.

-These two readings will look further into the problem of extinction, its causes, and the nature of the uncertainties involved in estimating them. They should also point to important factors to consider in doing your biological profiles.

READINGS FOR MAY 1

BIOLOGY AND POLICY:

Rohlf, D. (1991). Six biological reasons why the Endangered Species Act doesn't work - and what to do about it. Conservation Biology 5(3): 273-282.

O'Connell, M. (1992). Response to: "Six biological reasons why the Endangered Species Act doesn't work - and what to do about it." Conservation Biology 6(1).

-these readings present arguments over whether the ESA coincides well with what is known in conservation biology.

READINGS FOR MAY 8

CAN WE SAVE ALL SPECIES?

Mann, C. C. & Plummer, M. L. (1992). The butterfly problem. The Atlantic Monthly (Jan.): 47-70.

Palmer, T. (1992). The case for human beings. The Atlantic Monthly (Jan.): 83-88.

•Various (1992). "Playing God." (Letters to the editor.) The Atlantic Monthly (Apr.):6-9.

-Mann and Plummer are important critics of the ESA's ambition to save every species; they argue we lose because we refuse to choose and prioritize species. Their book, Noah's choice: The future of endangered species. New York: Knopf. QH76.M36 1995 will be put on reserve at Wilson, for those who want to read more.

READINGS FOR MAY 13

POINTS OF VIEW ON SPECIES PRESERVATION

Kerr, A. (1995). Viewpoint: Ecosystem management must include the most human of factors. BioScience, 45 (6): 378.

-constraints on managers

Hagan, J. (1995). Editorial: Environmentalism and the science of conservation biology. Conservation Biology 9 (5): 975-6.

-the scientist's identity

Clegg, M. (1995). Letter to Rep. Don Young, Aug. 21.

-head of the National Research Council replies to Young's misreadings

Various (1995). The case for saving species. Defenders (Sum.): 12-41.

-a who's who list of conservation biologists explain why save species

Teitel, M. (1996). Endangered Dinner. Sierra (Jan./Feb.): 12, 14.

-should we save varieties of domestic plants?

Huber, P. (1992). Biodiversity vs bioengineering. Forbes (Oct. 26): 266.

-will the instrumental value of species lead us to save them?

Kysar, L. (1990). A loggers lament. Newsweek (Oct. 22).

-a logger's perspective

Ehinger & Assoc. (1995). Mill closures, 1989-present.

Westneat, D. (1996). Loggers up for change. Seattle Times (Apr. 5): A1, A8

-changing practices and identities for loggers

Gadgil, M. (1993). Indigenous knowledge for biodiversity conservation. Ambio 22(2-3): 151-156

-the role of native peoples in conservation

Sheppard, N. (1988). Haiti's charcoal makers strip forests, make future even bleaker. Chicago Tribune (Oct. 2): A5.

-development pressures on resources

Folke, C. Perrings, C., McNeely, J. & Myers, N. (1993). Biodiversity conservation with a human face: Ecology, economics and policy. Ambio 22(2-3): 62-3

-brief summary of social factors in conservation

Gershon, D. (1992). If biological diversity has a price, who set it and who should benefit? Nature, 359 (Oct. 15): 565.

-the controversy over INBio & Merck in Costa Rica

McNeely, J. (1993). Economic incentives for conserving biodiversity: Lessons for Africa. Ambio 22(2-3):144-150.

-analyze the incentives and disincentives to conserve!

Metcalfe, S. C. (1995). Communities, parks, and regional planning: A co-managment strategy based on the Zimbabwean experience. In IUCN & J. A. McNeely (Ed.), Expanding partnerships in conservation. Washington DC: Island Press.

-the CAMPFIRE program in Zimbabwe

READINGS FOR MAY 15

THE 104TH CONGRESS AND THE ESA

Frampton, Jr., G. T (1995). Testimony before endangered species task force of the House Resources Committee on the Endangered Species Act.

-this and the following present the Clinton administration's response

Beattie, M. (1995). The Endangered Species Act: Myths and Realities. Address to Society of Environmental Journalists, May 20, Los Angeles.

Stevens, W. (1995). Future of Endangered Species Act in doubt as law is debated. New York Times (May 16): B7

Watkins, T. (1996). What's wrong with the Endangered Species Act? Audubon (Jan.-Feb.): 37-41.

Editorial Staff (1995). ESA: Is common sense an endangered species? Seattle Times (Apr. 23).

THE FOLLOWING TO BE DIVIDED UP AMONG THE CLASS:

GORTON BILL:

Gorton, S. 768

•Questions and Answers on Gorton/Johnston ESA Reform Bill. & miscellaneous letters to Sen. Gorton.

•National Wildlife Federation (1995). Analysis of Gorton's anti-ESA bill.

YOUNG-POMBO BILL:

•Young, D. (1995). Info packet on HR 2275.

RECENT REPUBLICAN COMPROMISE BILL:

Material from Representative Jim Saxton (R-NJ) & Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD), Jack Kingston ( R-GA) Nathan Deal (R-GA) on currently developing legislation.

ENDANGERED NATURAL HERITAGE ACT:

•Defenders of Wildlife (1996). Endangered Natural Heritage Act - Position and Discussion papers.

READINGS FOR MAY 20

HABITAT CONSERVATION PLANNING

GENERAL ISSUES:

•Raines, C. (1995). Negotiating for conservation. Endangered species bulletin, 20 (6): 22-23.

Beatley, T. (1994). Habitat conservation planning: Endangered species and urban growth. Ch 4, "The politics of Habitat Conservation Planning: Key actors and perspectives" (pp 40-53). Austin, TX: Univ. of Texas.

Wohlgenanat, T. & Orenstein, S. (1994). Negotiating endangered species conflicts: the Habitat Conservation Planning process. Resolve (25): 1-7.

Thornton, R. (1994). Industry perspectives regarding habitat conservation plans. Resolve (25): 12-14.

HCP'S IN THE NORTHWEST

US. Dept. Interior, FWS Region 1 (1994). What's all this stuff about "Habitat Conservation Planning" and "Incidental Take Permits" in PNW forests?

Hansen, C. (1995). Multi-species plan for forest habitat. Endangered species bulletin, 20 (6): 6-9.

Wilkinson, J. (1995). Good news for owls and jobs. Endangered species bulletin, 20 (6): 10-11.

CALIFORNIA COASTAL SCRUB HCP:

Reid , T. & Murphy, D. (1995). Providing a regional context for local conservation action. Bioscience (Supplement): S84-90.

Stevens, W. (1996). Salvation at hand for a California landscape. New York Times, Feb. 27: B7 & 10.

AT FAIRHAVEN ONLY:

Mann, C. & Plummer, M. (1995). California vs. gnatcatcher. Audubon (Jan.-Feb.): 39-48 & 100-104.

Beatley, T. (1994). Habitat conservation planning: Endangered species and urban growth. Ch. 5: Habitat Conservation Plans to protect butterflies and other invertebrate species: San Bruno Mountain and beyond" (pp. 54-68). Austin, TX: Univ. of Texas.

AT WILSON ONLY:

U. S. General Accounting Office (1994). Endangered Species Act: Information on species protection on nonfederal lands.

READINGS FOR MAY 22

CONFLICTING VALUES: ENDANGERED SPECIES AND PRIVATE PROPERTY

Olson, T. (1996). Biodiversity and private property: Conflict or opportunity? In W. Snape (Ed.) Biodiversity and the law (pp. 67-79). Washington DC: Island Press.

Goodin, R. (1990). Property rights and preservationist duties. Inquiry, 33 (4): 401-427.

Russow, L-M. (1981). Why do species matter? Environmental ethics, 3 (2):101-112.

Ehrenfeld, D. (1988). Why put a value on biodiversity? In E. Wilson (Ed.), Biodiversity (pp. 212-216). Washington DC: National Academy Press.

Randall, A. (1988). What mainstream economists have to say about the value of biodiversity. In E. Wilson (Ed.), Biodiversity (pp. 217-223). Washington DC: National Academy Press.

Harrison, P. (1992). The third revolution. Ch. 5: "The paragon of animals: Ranomafana forest, Madagascar" (pp. 73-87). London: Penguin.

-as requested, a piece dealing more with the dilemmas of the developing world

READINGS FOR JUNE 3 & 5

BEYOND SPECIES: BIODIVERSITY LOSS & ECOSYSTEM MANAGEMENT

Noss, R. F., LaRoe, E. T. & Scott, J. M. (1996). Endangered ecosytems of the United States: A preliminary assessment of loss and degradation. Selected pages from manuscript.

-hot new report from folks at National Biological Service

National Park Service, "Ecosystem management." www page

National Forest Service "Ecosystem management - An approach." www page

-official statements

Noss, R. F. (1991). From endangered species to biodiversity. In K. A. Kohm (Ed.), Balancing on the brink of extinction (pp. 227-246). Washington DC: Island.

-which types of 'indicator species' to save to get biodiversity too?

Patlis, J. (1996). Biodiversity, ecosystems and endangered species. In W. Snape (Ed.), Biodiverisity and the law (pp. 43-58). Washington DC: Island.

-discussion of the use of the ESA to save ecosystems.

Scott, J. M., Csuti, B. et al (1987). Species richness: A geographic approach to protecting future biological diversity. BioScience 37 (11):782-788.

-this and the next 2 articles trace a promising new technique for prioritizing areas to protect, "GAP ANALYSIS."

Prendergast, J. R., Quinn, R. M. et al (1993). Rare species, the coincidence of diversity hotspots and conservation strategies. Nature 365 (23 Sept.): 335-7.

Kareiva, P. (1993). No shortcuts in new maps. Nature 365 (23 Sept.): 292-3.

NATURE RESERVES:

Zube, E. H. (1995). No park is an island. In J. McNeely (Ed.), Expanding partnerships in conservation (pp. 169-177). Washington DC: Island.

-good discussion of permeable boundaries

Yoon, C. K. (1996). Plant census raises the alarm and leads to restoration effort. New York Times (Feb.13): B8.

-unexpected impacts WITHIN a reserve

Stevens, W. K. (1993). Restoring an ancient landscape: An innovative plan for the Midwest. New York Times (Mar. 2): B5-6.

-an example of a plan for ecosystem restoration