Articles by Biodiversivist
My real name is Russ Finley. I also have my own blog called Biodiversivist, which contains articles in addition to those submitted to Grist. I live in Seattle, married with children. Suffice it to say that although I am trained and educated as an engineer, my passion is nature. I very much want my grandchildren to live on a planet where lions, tigers, and bears have not joined the long and growing list of creatures that used to be.
Some fish stories are better than others. I used to work with a guy who claimed that he had once caught a fish so big he had to use his boat trailer to get it out of the water. This was after he had asked the skipper of the nuclear sub that had surfaced near him to help tow it to shore. I might have believed him if he hadn't added that part about the submarine.
I have a friend in Seattle (Ballard, to be more exact) who just bought a diesel Jetta. After doing much research on the subject (selectively reading articles that support biodiesel), she had concluded that it was the most ecologically sound vehicle available. She even has a bumper sticker to make sure everyone knows it: "Biodiesel: fuel for the revolution." Had she consulted me before her purchase, I might have convinced her to do otherwise (as I did with another friend who was also considering a Jetta). Biofuels are going to be bad news for the planet's biodiversity. As environmentalists, we should be resisting the idea, not promoting it.
I own a piece of second-growth forestland that abuts the Tahuya forest in Washington State. It is my contribution to the wildlife conservation effort. I think of it as a small, privately owned nature preserve. By choosing land adjacent to an existing forest I have effectively increased the size of that forest. Not being part of an ecological hotspot, its preservation means far less than that of, say, the Monteverde cloud forest of Costa Rica. Nonetheless, my efforts to protect it over the years have taught me a few things.