Born in 1769, Humboldt observed deforestation and its effects in the Amazon rainforests 200 years ago and wrote about them; he was possibly the first person to express concern for the negative effects of anthropogenic activity on the natural environment. He wrote of nature as a “living whole” and a web or tapestry – all life as connected – a new concept at that time.
Humboldt wrote about soil erosion as a result of deforestation, and of climate change. He describes concern for human destruction of the entire planet – even suggesting we would take that destruction to other, distant planets – and of human greed and violence.
Humboldt evidently influenced Charles Darwin himself. Was he the first ecologist? A fascinating listen.
“The two lead partners in the Scottish Beaver Trial – the Scottish Wildlife Trust and the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS) – have warmly welcomed today’s (21 November 2016) announcement from the Scottish Government that the Eurasian beaver is to be formally recognised as a native species, 400 years after being hunted to extinction in the UK.”
“The most ambitious of these scenarios proposed reducing animal-based protein consumption in all parts of the world where consumption (from any food source) exceeded 60 grams of protein and 2,500 calories daily — targeting 1.9 billion people worldwide in total. The proposed shift would bring these populations’ protein consumption down to exactly 60 grams daily by reducing only animal-based protein in the diet.”
“Amazon fire seasons don’t just happen — the rain forest doesn’t just burn in a massive way on its own. But logging, slash-and-burn agriculture and other human-induced changes have altered the landscape. Thinning out the forest also dries it out — the forest canopy then cannot block sunlight, and the understory and ground leaf layer become hotter and drier. Then, the trees are more flammable and fires can also spread more easily.”
Frontiers | Quantification of Overnight Movement of Birch (Betula pendula) Branches and Foliage with Short Interval Terrestrial Laser Scanning | Plant Biophysics and Modeling
Interesting new research into circadian rhythms in trees which seems to confirm that trees sleep.
[However, they could have got the Latin name for Betula correct in the original paper.]
Beautiful, previously hidden cave in the Amazonian mountains.
When I was a child, I dreamed of exploring places like these, of being the first human to find them and then ensuring they remained protected and untouched. I wanted to buy the entirety of the Amazon rainforests and preserve them! I was an idealistic innocent child and believed that all animals and wildlife were at risk of destruction by the bizarrely short-sighted, violent behaviour of humans. I was right. It’s a shame no one did that as rainforests worldwide are being decimated. I hope this place remains safe from tourism and destruction.
Diet key to feeding the world in 2050 without further deforestation, modelling suggests – Science News – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
I think vegan communities have been saying this for some years now. It’s common sense. It’s absolutely shameful that we are carrying out such horrific levels of deforestation as a result of western obsessions with a meat-based diet. None of this destruction was ever necessary.
Use India as our history lesson – do what is healthy and sustainable. Go vegan!