Wednesday, April 08, 2009

What makes a good environmental story? Suicides in trees?

I subscribe to PlanetArk alerts which are both interesting and a cheap way of finding material to blog about. However, I am sometimes perplexed as to their selection criteria for the "Home of World Environment News".

Today's lead article for example is titled:

Skeleton Found In Tree 29 Years After Suicide [PlanetArk]

BERLIN - The skeleton of a German retiree who tied himself to the top of a tree and shot himself to death nearly 30 years ago has been found by a hiker.

German police in the southern town of Landshut said on Monday the 69-year-old man disappeared in 1980 and had been classified as missing.

An 18-year-old hiker discovered a bone in the forest last week and brought it to police. They searched the area and spotted the skeleton hanging about 11 meters up, near the top of the spruce tree.

"After searching the area we found the skeleton up in the tree with the pistol hanging on a rope next to it," police spokesman Leonard Mayer said. Police were able to identify the man through DNA testing and an artificial hip.

Now I must say, this is an interesting story that I could not resist reading. I can only assume that the "environmental" angle is the fact that this poor chap was found in a tree. I am missing something?