Nature Noted

Notes on a changing Nature

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Location: Bellville, Texas, United States

I never would have predicted this one

Wednesday, December 29, 2004

BINGO hits the fan

My, Dr. Chapin seems to have stirred up a little storm. Last month, I linked to an article in Worldwatch Magazine that took the big international non governmental organizations (BINGO) like The Nature Conservancy, World Wildlife Fund, and Conservation International to task for running roughshod over indigineous people while trying to preserve wildlife. Gristmill notes the response is out, and my is there a lot of noise coming from all sides. The latest issue of Worldwatch has the readers' response.... 16 pages worth... what the editors say is the biggest response to anything they've ever published. It has rebuttals from the big 3 BINGO's defending their practices, a blistering letter from the Ford Foundation taking Dr. Chapin to task for what it calls factual errors, and letters from readers who say he hit the nail on the head.
Of the three letters from BINGO (I like that acronym), the WWF folks seem to me to be striking the right tone. They defend themselves, but in a roundabout way say, "hey, we think we're good, but there's so much anger out there, we're willing to take another look." The Ford Foundation letter raises some real questions about Chapin's reporting, but I think the other letters re-inforce that if he hasn't nailed all the facts, he has definitely hit a sore spot. You don't have to read all the letters, but if you have the time, they offer interesting perspectives on this hot issue.

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