Although potentially controversial, I am a strong advocate for conservation based mainly on intrinsic value.
We also know of the financial value of wild areas or animals (safari brings many tourist dollars for example) and the environmental goods and services argument (e.g., we need rivers as a source of fresh water).
I am planning a research paper investigating these motivations and would love to hear from you (regardless of your background/occupation or education). Are you motivated to conserve or preserve? Why? Does it make you happy just to know that you walk the same planet as koalas, or when you get in the ocean you know there’s a blue whale out there somewhere in the same water? Do you enjoy garden visitors such as butterflies or birds? Are you worried that the cure for cancer may be found in the rainforests that we are logging? And/or do you appreciate that we need trees to breathe and a sustainable source of food to eat?
Please let me know in the comments below. Thanks!