De-Extinction - Bringing Extinct Species Back to Life
Within the next several years, we will have the ability to bring extinct animals like the wooly mammoth or the passenger pigeon or the European auroch back to life. Unlike the silly fiction of Jurassic Park and its “dino DNA!!!” in a fossilized mosquito, we have uncovered nearly intact mammoth remains in Siberian permafrost. We have their genome … we can rebuild them.
But should we? Is this a world that a mammoth, or countless other extinct species targeted for de-extinction, belongs in? Who decides what belongs where, or rather when? Should we direct these efforts toward saving today’s endangered species instead?
There’s a lot of questions to answer. Luckily National Geographic has put together an entire issue and online collection on the subject, digging into the technology, the pros and the cons, and the very human motivations behind even asking these questions. It’s highly recommended reading.
What do you think?