Underreported: Conservation, Big and Small

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Which is more effective: large-scale conservation practices or smaller, more localized organizations? Large international NGOs like The Nature Conservancy and the World Wildlife Fund have contributed a lot to global conservation efforts. But some scientists and policymakers worry that conservation is being corporatized, at the expense of local programs and leadership. On the first part of this week’s Underreported, Leonard speaks with Dr. Mary Pearl, President of Wildlife Trust, and Jon Paul Rodríguez of the Center for Ecology of the Venezuelan Institute for Scientific Investigations. They're co-authors of a recent article in Science magazine, which you can download here from


Dr. Mary Pearl and Jon Paul Rodríguez

Comments [5]

kathy from NJ

Your can throw in your two cents, or all the money in the world, to organizations large and small, and its still not going to help much. The truth is, greenpeace and the nature conservancy and all the rest are losing. They're not saving the polar bears, the penquins, or the polar ice caps. They're not taking the lead and mercury and carbon monoxide and hydrocarbons out of the air. Refusing to drive a monster gas guzzler just might. Its up to you!

Aug. 16 2007 12:40 PM
Evelyn from New York

The issue isn't always large vs. small. In many cases, large and small organizations can work together to achieve a greater good than either could do alone. The Nature Conservancy's strategy in working internationally is specifically about leveraging partnerships and building capacity for local groups to effect on-the-ground conservation. A great example is the partnership between Wangari Maathai (Nobel Peace Prize winner and founder of the Green Belt Movement in Africa)'s local engagement and existing track record of success with The Nature Conservancy's resources, marketing ability and technical expertise. Rather than going in and trying to start something from scratch, The Nature Conservancy is providing Green Belt with funding and technical resources to scale up and do even more. In this situation, everyone wins.

Aug. 16 2007 12:29 PM
Aug from Spanish Harlem NYC

I agree that we as individuals must do our part in terms of conserving energy and living more inbalance with our inviornment, time is running out, if it hasn't already. what is the us of conservation while we are still burning gas and using dirty methods of fueling our way of life. something is going to have to change, thanks for the show.

Aug. 16 2007 12:24 PM
Kale from NYC

In the 90's we had treefrogs and WWF. Today we have climate change and carbon offsetting.

Please discuss the concept of carbon offsetting which seems to be coming more mainstream thse days. Is it a valid way to help reduce climate change? Or is it a smokescreen that benefits few yet makes consumers feel better about their (wasteful) lifestyle.

Aug. 16 2007 12:21 PM
kathy from NJ

The most effective campaign of all is for individual American's to do their part without having to be compelled by an official agency of any kind. More efficient lightbulbs, permanent grocery bags, and shorter showers are fine, but unless we stop dumping billions of tons per year of exhaust pipe and smoke stack poison into the air and sea, and unless we start TODAY.. well, forget it.

Aug. 16 2007 12:12 PM

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