Why Do Extinctions Matter? Mourning the Loss of Indigenous Flora in the Southwest of Western Australia
University of Sydney
Faculty of Education and Arts
School of Communications and Arts / Centre for Research in Entertainment, Arts, Technology, Education and Communications
The expansion of human populations and the demands of technological growth have placed global pressures on wild communities of organisms. Accelerating declines in habitat and the pollution of air and water have led to an extinction crisis unprecedented in the history of three billion years of life on Earth.1 Biodiversity ‘hotspots’ such as the Southwest corner of Western Australia are particularly susceptible to the kinds of pressures and transformations ecological systems are undergoing worldwide. The diverse and unique flora of this corner of Australia provides a poignant study of the pandemic of biological extinction. Public awareness and scientific recognition of indigenous flora in the Southwest offer the possibilities of conserving plants, alleviating the pressures leading to their disappearance and enhancing opportunities for human engagement with more‐than‐human life.