Species preservation

While most of us would like to be as much of an environmentalist as the author, the Opinion page article "A Better Approach to Preserving Species," Oct. 22, is just more ivory-tower rhetoric.

The problem with species preservation in the United States is that approximately 90 percent of biological diversity in the eastern and central US is on private land. True to form, the author proposes copious administrative and legal programs and funding for everything but the poor landowner who has invested labor, capital, and love in the land. Somehow it is always the landowner who is expected to sacrifice for the greater good.

What the endangered species program needs is not more administration and attorney welfare plans but more compensation money at the private grass-roots level, and that's the hard part. James Hanks, Durango, Colo.

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