Science activist Joe Kaplinsky looks at deforestation in its historic and developmental context. Launching a broadside against anti-development prejudice starting with Prince Charles, his noble ancestors and eco-warriors of today, sage commentator Kaplinsky gives a sober assessment of the real impact of current levels of deforestation. We are reminded that deforestation has been key to the growth of civilisation. Virgin forest was slowly transformed from mere hunting grounds for the nobility into bustling cities, industrial areas, transport and leisure amenities, modern agriculture and living spaces. On a world scale, subservient attitudes towards nature are rejected for the nobler aim of taking real control over nature and managing the land for all our benefit.