Thursday, January 27, 2005

Texan to sell earth's ecosystems

Here's something that won't surprise you: Decisions Investments Corporation of Texas is looking to sell the earth's environment. Or their piece of it. They own Biosphere 2, the 1.27 hectare glass-enclosed attempt to replicate various of earth's ecosystems (Science Magazine, 307:349, 2005). Built in the 1980s by another Texas billionaire, the facility (located in Oracle, AZ) has been plagued throughout its life (on earth) by technical problems, like maintaining proper oxygen and carbon dioxide for its resident "bionauts" who were meant to test whether humans could live in the sealed collection of mini-ecosystems. Columbia University took a crack at maintaining the facility but bailed out in 2003.

So DIC is selling the ecosphere to the highest bidder. Of course this is just a miniature ecosphere within a larger ecosphere. And maybe inside it is another one. And maybe outside the one we live in is another one, too. All owned by Texans.

Looked at in that light, the statements of DIC VP Martin Bowen take on new meaning: "we are seeking a right (sic) buyer who can keep the project going for the long term." Sounds like The Plan to Save Social Security.