Nature conservation is fundamentally about making people’s behavior less destructive to the earth’s ecosystems. A purely scientific approach to conservation might carve the world into various zones, preserving ecosystems that are vital to biodiversity conservation and designating others where human activity can most easily be absorbed. But no country, let alone the world, is run by a benevolent biologist-dictator who can unilaterally preserve great swaths of the planet. Conservation goals must b…

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