Wrestling here with the big and exciting debates opened up by Ibsen and Miller in AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE. Looking at the ethical counterpoise of competing values, this came up:
"In 1986, a worried environmentalist group petitioned the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to list the owl as an "endangered species," a move that would bar the timber industry from clearing these lands. In June 1990, after years of heated negotiation and litigation between the government, environmentalists, and the timber industry, the northern spotted owl was declared a threatened species. Under this provision, timber companies are required to leave at least 40% of the old-growth forests intact within a 1.3 mile radius of any spotted owl nest or activity site, a provision that is vehemently opposed by the timber industry. Industry representatives claim that the measure will leave thousands of Northwest loggers and mill workers jobless, and insist that such protectionist policies thoughtlessly fail to take into account the dire economic consequences of preservation. Environmentalists, on the other hand, argue that society has a fundamental obligation to preserve this rare species and the wilderness it inhabits."