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Do not waste nature’s ‘capital’: David Attenborough

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Overconsumption of the world’s natural resources is unsustainably cutting into its ecological “capital,” revered British naturalist David Attenborough warned Thursday.

“Financial systems have a lot in common with natural world systems. Both are economies,” Attenborough said Thursday during the spring meetings of the International Monetary Fund and World Bank.

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“If you deal with your investment… it’s fine if you can take the profit, you take the investment, but you wouldn’t be so silly as to eat into the capital. But that is what we’re doing with the natural world all the time.”

The BAFTA winner and long-time presenter of BBC wildlife documentaries spoke with IMF chief Christine Lagarde.

He said human beings and their domesticated animals now accounted for 96 percent of the global mass of all mammals.

“We’ve eliminated the rest,” he said. “Seventy percent of all bird species have gone. We are in terrible, terrible trouble.”

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“I find it difficult to exaggerate the peril that we are in. We are in the process of a new fresh extinction which we know all about from geological time,” said Attenborough.

“This is the new extinction — and we’re halfway through it.”

Early colonists in North America did not understand how their consumption of one species affected populations of others, he added.

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He pointed to the hunting of sea otters for their fur, which increased populations of sea urchins that had been preyed upon by the otters. The urchins then consumed more kelp, reducing spawning grounds for fish, which had previously been a great source of wealth, said Attenborough.

“When you remove the kelp forests the fish could no longer survive,” said Attenborough. “When you did realize it you could deal with it but it requires understanding.”

He also warned the time had long since come to deal with climate change.

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“The rate at which the climate is changing and warming, unless we act on the Paris Agreement to restrict that, we’re going to be in real trouble,” he said.

“Otherwise, if we just go on thinking this is going to be fine, we are going to be heading for major catastrophes. No doubt about that.”


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Bill de Blasio learned of federal investigation — and suspended his 2020 bid the next day: report

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New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" on Friday that he was ending his campaign for the Democratic Party presidential nomination.

There may have been more to the timing than previously reported.

"Federal election officials asked Mayor de Blasio for more information about his presidential campaign fundraising after he used a state political action committee to pay for expenses related to the bid – seemingly against the law," the New York Daily News reported Friday. "The Federal Election Commission demanded that de Blasio 2020 clarify a debt the campaign owed his NY Fairness PAC in a letter Thursday – the day before Hizzoner dropped out of the race."

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White House Counsel busted working to keep whistleblower report from Congress: report

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President Donald Trump's White House counsel has reportedly been personally involved in keeping Congress from reviewing a whistleblowing report involving Ukraine.

"The revelation that Trump pushed Zelensky to pursue the Biden probe, which was first reported by The Wall Street Journal, represents the most detailed account so far of the president’s conduct that prompted a U.S. intelligence official to file a whistleblower action against the president," The Washington Post reported Friday. "The disclosure comes amid new details about the White House’s role in preventing Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire from complying with Congressional demands for the material in the complaint."

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Watch Ex-CIA official break down the ‘three crimes’ Trump committed if Ukraine scandal is true

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President Donald Trump could be charged with committing three federal crimes if the whistleblower reports involving the White House seeking campaign interference from Ukraine are correct.

MSNBC "Deadline: White House" anchor Nicolle Wallace interviewed Jeremy Bash on Friday -- and worried about the safety of the whistleblower.

"The stakes could not be any higher, the risk to his career -- or her career -- and reputation and perhaps legal standing could not be any higher for this whistleblower. That's why we’re glad to be joined by national security analyst, former chief of staff of the CIA and Department of Defense, someone I wanted to talk to about this story all week, Jeremy Bash," Wallace said.

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