Jane Goodall preaches hope for nature
World-renowned environmentalist and primatologist Jane Goodall spends some 300 days a year traveling around the world making efforts to protect animals and nature.
The 76-year-old has woven her stories into a new book “Hope for Animals and Their World: How Endangered Species Are Being Rescued from the Brink,” which has been published in Korean.
“Without hope, we cannot do anything. There is hope out there. But it depends on all of us who are getting involved,” Goodall told reporters in a press conference Tuesday.
She came to Korea to promote her new book and hold lectures to Korean young students after touring Hong Kong, Japan and China.
“The reason I wrote the latest book is because I have met so many young biologists with pessimism in the environment,” she said.
The book offers glimpses of her firsthand experiences conducting research with world renowned scientists. It illuminates the hidden heroic efforts of environmentalists and biologists who have dedicated their time to protect wildlife habitats.
The book sends out an inspirational message about the future of human coexistence with other animals. “This book has taken me on a fantastic journey of exploration: I have learned ever more about animal and plant species brought to the brink of extinction by human activities and then ― sometimes at the very last minute and against all odds ― been given a reprieve,” Goodall writes in the introduction of the book. “The stories shared here illustrate the resilience of nature and the persistence and determination of the men and women who fight ― sometimes for decades ― to save the survivors of a species, refusing to give up… Even when our mindless activities have almost entirely destroyed some ecosystems or driven a species to the brink of extinction, we must not give up. Thanks to the resilience of nature and the indomitable human spirit, there is still hope.”
Although she mostly studied chimpanzees in Gombe, Nigeria since she was 26, she realized that there are many other suffering species on the brink of the extinction.
One of the inspirational stories from her experiences with other scientists is that in the 1980s’ there were only two Black Robins remaining ― a male and female ― but the number now stands at more than 400 with the efforts of biologists.
As for the ever-worsening global warming, Goodall said that it can be “slowed down” as everyone can contribute to reduce electricity, for example.
Concerning the government-driven redevelopment project of the four rivers in Korea, she said there are various ways to protect the rivers such as eliminating the pollution of the rivers. “Some dams are very destructive and change the ecosystem and it is important to protect the banks of the rivers,” she said.
She operates the Roots & Shoots, a program of the Jane Goodall Institute, a powerful, youth-driven, global network of 121 countries around the world for the conservation of the environment.