After all scientists do not have to excuse for what are they doing. After clearing of all the debris of ‘social importance’ and ‘achievement for humanity’ there remains the only one reason behind the any science and any scientist: curiosity. Everything other serves as a funding grounds. The story of mammoth revival project is a perfect example of the model.
Last mammoth died about 4000 years ago. As great number of them are preserved in permafrost their DNA is in a good shape. It makes woolly mammoth a good contender to the role of the first animal which will be resurrected from total extinction. But there are problems: the DNA samples are in good shape but not fully intact. Some important parts are missing and for now beyond repair. Another problem consists of business point of view. Who will pay for the research which will not necessary lead to the breakthrough? The mammoth needs to be approved as a key to solve some other problem with established funding. Guess which one?
The global warming mitigation is one of the best financed branches of science. If mammoth will help to stop global warming all the projects associated with it will be fully funded. And here we behold: Mammoth, the savior of climate!
Scientists speculate that mammoth as biggest herbivore in the ancient steppe was the key to stability. Mammoths prevented forestation and turning steppe to the forests and the steppes have much bigger albedo (‘reflection’) than woods. Thus more sun energy retransmitted back to the space and lesser the warming effect. And if somehow mammoth will return everything will be back on track with the global warming.
It is very shaky logic behind the whole tale. Even if it is true mammoth is not the only answer. And not only resurrect from the oblivion, but to populate with the mammoth vast regions of North America and Russia is a task beyond imagination.