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The Baiji: 20 Million Year Old Dolphin Extinct

They’re cute, shy mammals that have been the center of movies and campaigns, beloved by many. Now, China’s baiji, the white dolphin, has been called functionally extinct.

http://www.cnn.com/2006/TECH/science/12/13/china.dolphin.ap/index.html

One has to wonder if the rapid industrialization of China has contributed to this creature’s demise. How is it that in the 80s, there were almost 400 of them and now, there are only 13 confirmed sightings? It is no coincidence that overfishing and pollution were culprits in this murder. Let’s be honest and call this what it is. The baiji isn’t the only animal suffering because of human greed and “need” of natural resources.

What will human beings do to rectify things of this nature? This Earth, our home, is based on delicate balances. Minor changes in the Earth’s axis could make our world an extremely inhospitable one. The loss of creatures that have survived for so long is without a doubt a sign at the progress of human intervention of nature. I fear for the impact the rapidly urbanization of China will have on us all. A country of billions industrializing at this rate will surely darken our skies. What hope there is, I think, is fading unless some aggressive regulations can slow the damage.

Sure, been there, heard that… but is anyone doing anything about it?