Op Ed, Never Printed

Publisher: San Francisco Chronicle
Reporter: Edward O. Wilson

Dear Editor,

The Bay Area is incalculably fortunate to have a unique oasis of biodiversity at San Bruno Mountain. However, as is the case with so many other global treasures, this great fortune is not being handled with adequate care. In my book, The Diversity of Life, I highlighted San Bruno Mountain as one of eighteen global biodiversity "hotspots" in need of immediate protection, along with the Usambaa mountain forests of Tanzania, the Columbian Choco, Madagascar, and others. San Bruno Mountain's ecosystems are severely jeopardized by development and its associated problems, principally the invasion of non-native species. More development, as is currently proposed, will further fragment what is home to hundreds of plant and animal species, including several that live nowhere else. Current Habitat Conservation Plan provisions are insufficient to preserve this rich biodiversity.

It is imperative that all the open space that remains on San Bruno Mountain be saved. We can leave our decendants a sorely degraded environment and an example of abuse and exploitation, or we can leave a rich legacy of respectful stewardship-it is our choice. I urge all Californians to take a stand in favor of conserving San Bruno Mountain.

Sincerely yours,

Edward O. Wilson
University Research Professor
Harvard University