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THE SECRETS OF LIFE

At its heart, Rockford's Rock Opera is a story about extinction and the many amazing creatures we will loose if humans don't change the way they treat the natural world.

Life on our planet has changed constantly over millions of years and extinction is a normal part of the process. New species evolve as others die out. It's all part of life. But this extinction process used to take millions of years...

Humans and Extinction

Since human civilisation began, around 10,000 years ago, the rate at which animal and plant species are being lost has rocketed. In fact, scientists now think that over half the species on earth may disappear within the next 100 years. Experts are calling it the 6th extinction - the 6th time our planet has faced a mass extinction event (the last such mass extinction occurred when, it is believed, a vast asteroid or comet hit the earth.)

As humans clear forests, as we use 'better' technology to find more fish, as we demand more food and more luxury products and as we make the planet more polluted, we'll gradually see species becoming rarer and rarer and then disappearing.

What a tragic injustice and what a ridiculous waste. Humans should be caring for the world for now and for future generations, not destroying it to fulfil our greed.

But there's more.

The Creatures Have a Secret

By destroying animals, plants and habitats, humans aren't just depriving the earth of interesting or beautiful things. We are, without question, loosing important answers - amazing natural secrets that could, one day, save us all.

There are so many benefits we enjoy from the natural world, but do you realise just how many inventions have come about as the result of studying plants and animals? From medicine to engineering, from sport to art, there are literally thousands of examples of how nature has shown humans how to make things better. And, crucially, as science advances, we're discovering that we don't have to exploit and destroy animals and plants to learn from them.

The natural world is a treasure trove of secrets, of ideas and solutions, worked out by plants and animals that have evolved over millions of years. But in order to share in this knowledge, we must protect and nurture life. All life. Because, once life is extinct there is no going back...

Listed here in our 'SECRETS OF LIFE' Directory are all the vital breakthroughs that have been discovered though the study of plants and animals. If there's something you know about which isn't listed here please let us know.

Using Animals and Plants in Science

The use of plants and, particularly, animals in science is, of course, a highly emotive subject. The following links demonstrate the debate that exists especially in relation to abhorrent, unnecessary, animal testing.

Visit Animal Welfare Science and Bioethics Centre website http://anzccart.rsnz.org/
and the PETA website http://www.peta.org/about/faq-viv.asp to read about the various views on this subject.

For the purpose of this directory, our view is entirely pragmatic. If the study of plants and animals for the genuine advancement of human knowledge, ensures the wider survival of those and other species then we accept this as the greater good. In the longer term, we hope that scientists will develop more non-invasive, non-destructive ways to learn from animals and plants and that all species can live together, safe, free and in harmony. (20% of all profits of Rockford's Rock Opera go to charity - one principal focuses of future giving will be the advancement of non invasive scientific life study.)

For the time being we believe that it is only by demonstrating the potential commercial value of the natural world to the companies and governments that rule the planet, that we stand any chance of saving it for the peaceful enjoyment of future generations.

What Can We Do?

There are many, many people working hard to protect the world. They care for species and environments and help poor people in 'developing' countries so that they don't have to exploit the natural world to make a living and to feed their families.

On the Rockford's Rock Opera website there's lots more information about extinction and the wonders of the natural world, plus details of organisations you can join and things you can do, right now!

You CAN make a difference!