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David Seaborg Evolutionary Biologist, Environmental Leader and Poet

World Rain Forest Fund

Biography of David Seaborg

David Seaborg is an evolutionary biologist. He originated the concept that organisms act as feedback systems in their evolution, and that they thus play an important role in their evolution. This concept is a mechanism for punctuated equilibrium. He showed that the canonical genetic code is on an adaptive peak, and how populations cross over maladaptive valleys from one adaptive peak to another. He published a hypothesis to explain how homosexuality evolved even though it theoretically reduces the number of offspring produced. David is an environmental leader. He founded and is President of the World Rainforest Fund, a nonprofit foundation dedicated to saving the earth's tropical rainforests and biodiversity. He also founded and headed the Seaborg Open Space Fund, named in honor of his father, to raise money and awareness to save open space from development in central Contra Costa County. This fund raised $20,000 in less than a year to successfully help save Acalanes Ridge in Lafayette, California. He had to close the fund down because he did not have time to continue running it. He wrote an article that is a summary of the scientific research on the effects of high atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide other than global warming. Unlike the climatic effects, these effects are not well known to the general public. They are very serious, and have the potential to cause high levels of extinction of species and greatly disrupt ecosystems and our food supply.

He was on the city of Lafayette's General Plan Advisory Committee, which he guided to producing a ten-year General Plan for that city that emphasized environmental sustainability, preserving open space, combating global warming, and energy conservation. In the 1990s and part of the first decade of this century, he served on the Board of Directors and as Vice President of the Club of Rome of the USA, the environmental think tank that published the Limits to Growth in the 1970s. This is a computer simulation study that showed that continued growth and consumption of resources will lead society to disaster.

He was on the Board of Directors of the East Bay Chapter of the United Nations Association of the U. S. A. from 2006 to 2009, where he is the lead environmental person. He gave the keynote address at their last annual meeting, and helped secure the passage of key resolutions on biodiversity and global warming and the Kyoto Protocol, at the local, state, and national levels of the UNA/ USA. These resolutions call for action on these issues by the U. N. and U. S. government. He is leading a drive to sign Bay Area cities up to commit to making an inventory of and limiting their greenhouse gas emissions under the Kyoto Protocol, a necessary effort in light of the Bush administrations refusal to sign this U. N. treaty.

He conceived, and helped secured passage by the Berkeley City Council, an ordinance banning the use of old growth rainforest and redwood in all products used by the city of Berkeley. This ordinance also required all businesses contracting with Berkeley to stop using old growth rainforest and redwood in any products or services Berkeley hires them to use or perform, or in any product they sell this city. He is currently working with the Berkeley city council to secure passage of an ordinance banning the use of plastic bags in grocery stores, and plastic newspaper wrappers, in that city. David carried the Ten Commandments for the Earth, a version of the original Ten Commandments re-written to focus on saving the earth's environment, while riding a camel down Mount Sinai, the mountain in Egypt down which Moses carried the original Ten Commandments. Then, in a brief ceremony, he presented these Ten Commandments to a Bedouin youth, who represented the indigenous people and the youth of the planet, the generation inheriting the earth for its stewardship. After completing this act, which was captured on video camera, David swam for over an hour with a dolphin in the Red Sea. David conceived the idea for and was the head organizer for a press conference of Nobel Prize winners on global environmental issues that was held at the time of the 100th Nobel Prize ceremonies in Stockholm, Sweden, in December, 2001. He is renowned for being especially socially skilled, excellent at working with and bringing out the best in people, and inspiring them to have an interest in biology, the earth, its animals and their habitats. He has inspired countless people to become environmentalists passionate about saving the earth. As a result of this passion, many of these people worked hard at saving the environment and achieved a considerable degree of success at it.

David has been to over 30 countries, observing various natural ecosystems and wildlife. He is an award-winning nature and wildlife photographer and an award-winning poet. He is listed is in Who's Who In America. An excellent public speaker, he lectures to various scientific, environmental, civic, business, and other organizations on evolutionary biology, the philosophical implications of science, and environmental issues.

Environmental Accomplishments of David Seaborg

Convinced the Berkeley City Council to pass an ordinance outlawing the use of old growth redwood and wood from rainforests by the city and by any companies contracted with the city. I was the most instrumental person in getting this passed. Had the idea for and organized a conference of Nobel Prize winners at the 100th Nobel Prize ceremony in Stockholm, Sweden, on saving biodiversity, combating global warming, promoting peace, reducing nuclear weapons, and alleviating poverty. This was covered on CSPAN and in _Science_ magazine, the publication of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

Founded and have headed the World Rainforest Fund (WRF) as President since its inception in 1983. This is a state and federal tax-exempt 501c3 organization dedicated to saving rainforest worldwide, mainly in Latin America. WRF has educated many people in the United States about the need to preserve tropical rainforest. WRF helped save a reserve for the Red Panda in Nepal by working with and providing a grant to the Red Panda Foundation. WRF gave grants to Internationals Rivers that helped stop the construction of destructive mega-dams in rainforests. It gave a grant to Amazon Watch to empower Indians to stop oil companies from drilling for oil in their rainforest homes. This has been a large source of pollution in rainforest. WRF also has given grants to Ecocity Builders, a nonprofit that advocates cities be made environmentally sustainable. This saves rainforests and species from extinction because compact cities take up less land, including rainforest habitat, and reduces global climatic destruction because cities that cater to pedestrians, bikes, and trains, rather than cars, produce less greenhouse gasses. Halting global warming saves rainforest because global warming causes rainforests to dry out and burn easily.

WRF has also partnered with other rainforest organizations, such as the Rainforest Action Network, for fundraising and other purposes. WRF also gave smaller grants, in its program to support local peace and environmental groups, to the following nonprofit, local, peace and environmental organizations:

Muir Heritage Land Trust, International House at UC Berkeley, Sea Turtle Restoration Project, SPAWN (Salmon Protection And Watershed Network), Wild Equity Institute, Nature in the City. Members of the Board of Advisors include Randy Hayes, founder and former President of the Rainforest Action Network; actress Darryl Hannah; Erin Brokovich, noted activist against chemical pollution; Phil Berry and Michelle Perault, both former Presidents of the Sierra Club; Wes Jackson, head and founder of the Land Institute and leading expert and author on sustainable agriculture; Joanna Macy, founder, Council of All Beings; Richard Register, President and founder, Ecocity Builders; John Robbins, founder, EarthSave, and author of Diet for a New America. Past Advisory Board members who are now deceased include noted environmental leader David Brower; former Berkeley City Councilmember Donna Spring; and Bill Devall, one of the people who started the deep ecology movement.

World Rain Forest Fund

Currently, the World Rainforest Fund is raising money for, and granting money to, Indians of the rainforest of the Brazilian Amazon to demarcate their land. The Brazilian constitution states that Indian land belongs to the Indians, but poachers and loggers destroy the land in spite of this if the indigenous people cannot prove they own it. If the land is marked, this stands up in court. So this protects rainforest habitat. A scientific study found that the best way to protect rainforest is to empower the native people who live in it. This tends to protect it in the surest way, because Indians living there guard the land. Setting up national parks in rainforest countries is a less lasting form of protection, because they often become "paper parks", and invaders come and cut the trees or mine for minerals, because Third World countries with rainforest often cannot afford to or do not hire enough guards to protect the parks. Empowering Indians also tends to save more rainforest per dollar spent than any other method of saving rainforest. Served as Vice President and on the Board of Directors of the USA Branch of the Club of Rome, an influential environmental think tank that publishes periodic reports on the state of the earth's environment. This is the same Club of Rome whose famous study in the 1970s using a computer simulation of the future showed that tragedy will occur if resource consumption and pollution addition continued at then-current rates or even lower. It was published as the book, _Limits to Growth_, which sold more copies than any other non-fiction volume. Co-author of chapter on the environment (called simply, "Environment"), in the book, _Future of the Western Hemisphere_, a Club of Rome Report, copyright 2011. Comes with CD with graphs, data, etc., for all the factors for the International Future's model.

Radio talk show host on KPFA Radio, in Berkeley, CA, 1996; show was called "The Endangered Earth." Interviewed guests first half-hour, took phone calls from listeners second half-hour. Had David Brower, Randy Hayes when he headed Rainforest Action Network, William Reilly, former President of World Wildlife Fund and head of EPA under President George Bush, Sr. Was most popular environmental radio show in the SF Bay Area at the time. Awarded Meritorious Service Award for volunteer work that included conservation of reptiles and amphibians at the Natural History Museum of the Smithsonian Institute, Washington, D. C., while in high school. Was on Environmental Advisory Committee to Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher, D, 10th CD, East Bay Area. Author of poetry book that includes many poems on the environment. Best-selling local poetry book by a poet who had not previously published a poetry book. Award-winning nature and wildlife photographer. Listed in Who's Who in America, Who's Who in Science and Engineering, and Who's Who of Emerging Leaders in America Carried the 10 Commandments for the Earth, an environmental version of the 10 Commandments, down Mount Sinai, Egypt, the mountain from which Moses allegedly carried the original 10 Commandments. Then presented them, in a ceremony that was filmed, to a Bedouin youth, who represented indigenous people, youth, and the next generation. Was the major advisor to an environmental activist group of adults and children concerning convincing the Martinez City Council to ban plastic bags.

Did research and conservation work to conserve Leatherback Sea Turtles in the state of Michoacan, Mexico. Did research and conservation work to conserve Loggerhead Sea Turtles in Florida.

Worked with a coalition to successfully prevent a large Japanese corporation from building a large industrial plant in San Ygnacio Lagoon, Mexico, the major calving ground for the California Gray Whale. One of the three winners of the Big Year competition concerning the Golden Gate National Recreation Area in 2008. This had over 200 contestants working to preserve, conserve, and restore the habitats of the GGNRA, and conserve its threatened and endangered species. The three people who did the most conservation work were the winners. Educated hundreds of people on the need to conserve tropical rain forest worldwide, including the threats to rain forests and why they are important to conserve.

Convinced Allermed Corporation in Plano, Texas, to switch from Styrofoam to an alternative in shipping all of its products. Allermed sells air purifiers and the filters that go with them, which must be replaced every three months. There are three kinds of these filters: prefilters, carbon filters, and HEPA filters. Thus, the annual amount of packaging is substantial.

Organized residents of Sunset Park, a large community of town houses in Walnut Creek, California, in a successful campaign to stop spraying of the toxic pesticide, atrazine, in the complex. Also, through similar organizing, stopped another toxic pesticide from being sprayed there, at a later date.

Planted demonstration garden in Sunset Park of native plants that produce nectar for native bees and butterflies. Native bees are better pollinators of our food crops than honey bees, which are not native, though honeybees pollinate a greater variety of our food crops. Then, based on the success of the demonstration garden, convinced Board of Directors of Sunset Park to replace non-native plants with the native plants that feed native bees and butterflies in much of the complex.

Gave many lecturers, educating thousands of people about the extinction crisis and climate deterioration, including the human-induced causes and dire consequences, and solutions and what individual citizens can do to improve the situation. Educated many children on these issues as well. Often illustrated talks with reptiles and other interesting animals that people were allowed to touch or hold if they so desired. Helped to restore habitat for the endangered California Least Tern. Habitat restoration usually consists of removing invasive, exotic plants, or planting threatened or endangered native plants. This is explained here because a number of habitat restoration projects follow.

Helped restore foraging habitat for the endangered Northern Spotted Owl at Muir Woods, California.

Helped restore habitat for the endangered San Mateo Thorn Mint at Edgewood County Park, California, by removing invasive species. Helped restore endangered Tiburon Paintbrush habitat in Marin County, California.

Helped restore habitat for native plants in San Francisco's Natural Areas Program.

Help restore endangered Fountain Thistle habitat in San Mateo County, California.

Helped restore endangered Presidio Clarkia (a plant) habitat in Tennessee Hollow, California.

Helped restore endangered Dwarf-Flax habitat in the Park Presidio, San Francisco, California.

Helped to restore endangered Lessingia (a plant) habitat in Lobos Creek Valley, California.

Located exotic, invasive plants and reported them as a volunteer for Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

Found and reported exotic, invasive aquatic plant growing in Los Lomas Reservoir, Contra Costa Conty.

Helped to restore endangered California Seablite habitat at Crissy Field Marsh, California.

Helped to restore endangered Salt Marsh Harvest Mouse habitat in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area.

Helped to restore endangered San Francisco Garter Snake habitat at Mori Point, California.

Helped restore endangered Mission Blue Butterfly habitat in San Mateo County, California.

Rescued a large number of endangered, young, trapped Coho Salmon in drying streams in Marin County, California, capturing them in drying out portions of the streams, and releasing them in parts of the streams with deeper water.

Helped restore endangered Steelhead Trout habitat in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area. Wrote influential article in Earth Island Journal, the journal of the environmental organization, Earth Island Institute, entitled, "The Greenhouse Diet", pointing out that carbon dioxide in high concentrations in the atmosphere has many disastrous effects on the environment and biodiversity, other than global warming. For example, herbivorous insects and mammals that eat plants grown under conditions of high carbon dioxide have stunted growth and much higher mortality because the plants that they eat have a much lower ratio of protein to carbohydrate. This could cause collapse of some ecosystems because of the importance of plant-eating insects as a source of food for birds and lizards, in controlling plant populations, and as pollinators. These problems are not well-known to the general public, and are not taken into account in public policy.

Live environmental lifestyle, demonstrating to others by example: eat organic food; walk to and ride BART, the local train system; conserve energy use; where organic clothing; recycle everything; conserve water; use non-toxic detergents, dishwashing liquids, household cleaning agents; grow native plants that feed native bees and butterflies and some of my own food.

Organized and headed the most popular and what was considered the best panel of the NGO section of the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development (known as the Earth Summit), in Johannesburg, South Africa, in 2002. The panel included the president of Worldwatch Institute, the founder and Executive Director of Ecocity Builders, chimpanzee researcher and conservationist Jane Goodall, and myself, and was introduced with a performance by Zulu dancers, and ended with an appearance by Jerry Brown, current Governor of California.

Recently authored the Universal Declaration of Rights, which includes and builds on U. N. Declaration of Human Rights and U. S. Bill of Rights, but adds rights for animals and nature, and includes declaration of interdependence, recognizing our dependence on nature and the fact that human rights are not possible to sustain without protecting nature, in view of the current environmental crisis. Also includes right to eat, work, breathe clean air, drink clean water. This document will be useful for people in the Middle East to use in view of current up-risings. It protects voting rights in view of recent attempts to disenfranchise poor, students, and minorities in U.S. Thus, it is a modernized version of U. S. Bill of Rights and U. N. Declaration of Human Rights. This can be sent to any interested parties on request.

Current or past member of or donor to the following environmental organizations (this is not a comprehensive list):

World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, Sierra Club, Natural Resources Defense Council, Worldwatch Institute, Earth Island Institute, Rainforest Action Network, International Rivers, Amazon Watch, Population Connection (formerly Zero Population Growth), Ecocity Builders, Muir Heritage Land Trust, Sea Turtle Restoration Project, SPAWN (Salmon Protection And Watershed Network), Wild Equity Institute, Nature in the City, Planned Parenthood, Center for Biodiversity, Save Mount Diablo, Ruckus Society, Green Policy Institute, National and Golden Gate Audubon Societies, Global Footprint Network, National Wilderness Society, California Wilderness Coalition, Center for Environmental Health, Save the Redwoods League, Greenbelt Alliance, East Bay Parks Foundation, Save the Bay, Red Panda Network, Interfaith Power and Light, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, Defenders of Wildlife, Jane Goodall Institute, Union of Concerned Scientists, Environmental Defense Fund, Environmental Protection Education Center, Rainforest Foundation.

Current projects that are goals in going to the conference: Save biodiversity and help stop the crisis of human-caused species extinction, which is currently over one thousand times the normal background extinction rate, and involves loss of habitats such as rainforests and coral reefs.

Helped stabilize world climate and stop global climatic disruption. Work for an international treaty involving all nations with nuclear weapons or a desire to acquire them to have all nuclear-armed nations to reduce their stockpiles of nuclear weapons in a fair way, and have nations without them agree not to acquire them. This is to include inspections and verification.