Biodiversity 36.6

Published: November 2010

Initially intended to celebrate our nation’s spectacular biodiversity in 2010, the UN International Year of Biodiversity, Alternatives Journal could not help but highlight Ottawa’s spectacular failure to value these invaluable ecosystems. At the UN's Convention on Biological Diversity in Nagoya, Japan, Canada may be blocking progress, rather than encouraging it.

Find out how Canada's bias for biotech trumps its commitment to sustainable agriculture. Plus, Nature's ecosystem services are worth billions. Just ask the extreme poor in Mexico's Sierra Gorda who are being paid to protect the biodiversity in their homeland.

 Read selected articles and web extras from this issue

Here's what else you get when you buy the issue:

Ecosystem Services for Cash Social justice meets ecological protection in the Sierra Gorda Biosphere, Mexico.

Getting the Price Right - Paige Olmsted
Paying for ecosystem services recognizes the payback that these life-supporting processes offer.
Nature's "Free" Services Worth $600-Billion

A New Water Ethic - Merrell-Ann Phare, Robert Sandford
Three essential principles would ensure resilient water ecosystems in Canada.
Water as Poetics and Praxis

Biodiversity in Time - Stephen Bocking
From prehistoric mass extinctions to human-influenced present day, here are the landmarks of life.

Grub Match Kim Burnett, Linda Swanston
Grassroots forces are duking it out with the behemoths behind large-scale agribusiness.
Agriculture at a Crossroads

RAVE On Thanks in part to a Rapid Assessment of Visual Expedition, or RAVE, the Flathead Valley is now off limits to mountaintop mining.

Biodiversity Politics: Biopiracy - Nicola Ross
When it comes to fair and equitable benefits-sharing of genetic resources, the Canadian government favours commercial interests over those of Indigenous Peoples and traditional knowledge holders.

Biodiversity Politics: Press Release - Jessica Dempsey
Canada announces it actually cares about biodiversity.

Letters to the Editor: 36.6

In Brief: BC's Garry Oak Recovery Depends on Local Landowners - Laura Judson

In Brief: Aliens Help Endangered American Chestnuts - Jeri Parrent

Sex in The Clearing - Andil Gosine
Mlle Bourgeoise Noire gets close up and personal

In Review: Prosperity Without Growth - Mark Brooks

In Review: The Biofuel Delusion -  Kyrke Gaudreau

Kulturträger: Getting Down and Dirty - Mark Meisner
Dirtgirlworld offers little kids a funky rockin' organic alternative to talking machines and consumer-oriented TV.

Eye of the Storm - Jeff Beyer
A Climate Tale of No Tactics As Europe prepares for a low-carbon future, Canada is still pretending.

Publication of this issue was made possible by The Gosling Foundation; The Salamander Foundation; and the support from our many subscribers. We acknowledge the financial support of Canada’s International Development Research Centre (; EJLB Foundation; Friends of the Greenbelt Foundation; The McLean Foundation; Ontario Media Development Corporation; Ontario Trillium Foundation; Ontario Work Study Plan. We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Periodical Fund (CPF) of the Department of Canadian Heritage toward our project costs. The support of the Faculty of Environment at the University of Waterloo and the Waterloo Environmental Studies Endowment Foundation is appreciated.'

Here's what's online:

Biodiversity 36.6

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