Free Access to Every Species on the Planet

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A Web Page for Each of the World’s Creatures

By Stephen Leahy

May 10 (IPS) – Scientists launched a global initiative Thursday called the “Encyclopedia of Life” that will document the Earth’s 1.8 million known species and track the impacts of habitat loss and climate change.

The ambitious electronic encyclopedia will catalogue the details of every species thus far identified and put all this information on the Internet so anyone can access it.

“This will be a fantastic resource for the developing world,” said James Edwards, the new executive director of the Encyclopedia of Life project headquartered in Washington at the Smithsonian Institution.

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