Archive | Plants RSS for this section

Bolsonaro’s election is catastrophic news for Brazil’s indigenous tribes

Bolsonaro’s election is catastrophic news for Brazil’s indigenous tribes.

Bolsonaro plans to deregulate deforestation. Since the election in Brazil and his ecocidal rhetoric, deforestation in Brazil doubled in two months.

Bolsonaro is quoted as saying:

It’s my advice and I do it: I evade all the taxes I can.

I would never rape you, because you don’t deserve it.

I will not fight against it nor discriminate, but if I see two men kissing on the street, I’ll beat them up.

I would be incapable of loving a gay son. I wouldn’t be a hypocrite. I prefer that he die in an accident than show up with some guy with a moustache.

She doesn’t deserve it [to be raped] because she’s very bad, because she’s very ugly. She’s not my type, I’d never rape her. I’m not a rapist, but if I was, I wouldn’t rape her because she doesn’t deserve it.

There will not be a centimeter demarcated for indigenous or quilombo reservations.

As this article states, “The country’s 900,000-strong indigenous people are among the many minority groups Jair Bolsonaro has frequently targeted with vitriolic hostility. “It’s a shame that the Brazilian cavalry wasn’t as efficient as the Americans, who exterminated their Indians,” he once said. If he enacts his campaign promises, the first peoples of Brazil face catastrophe; in some cases, genocide.

There are around 100 uncontacted tribes in Brazil, more than anywhere else on earth, and all are in peril unless their land is protected. Bolsonaro has threatened to close down FUNAI, the government’s indigenous affairs department, which is charged with protecting indigenous land. Already battling against budget cuts, if it disappears uncontacted peoples face annihilation.”

What has happened to us? When did the lunatics take over?

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/oct/31/jair-bolsonaro-brazil-indigenous-tribes-mining-logging

Advertisements

Some marine creatures may be more resilient to harsher ocean conditions than expected – Linkis.com

So I’m writing an essay about drivers of coral reef bleaching, and reading about acidification and its effects on marine mammals that secrete calcium carbonate, and this new research pops up. Interesting immediate adaptation to cope with lower pH levels in marine environments; although I’m not sure how long-term (and effective) an adaptation it might be. Similarly, some coral species and their symbionts are more tolerant of some drivers of bleaching than others. Again, in the short-term that helps those species, but it’s not clear how far beyond their normal thresholds for CO2, irradiance, thermal stress and acidification they can survive. And then there’s coral diseases… We are pushing the limits, changing environments and testing tolerance thresholds for so much of the world’s wildlife, and not in a good way. 

http://linkis.com/m.phys.org/news/u31W9

Humboldt – the greatest Ecologist we’ve never heard of?

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.

http://bbc.in/2gkKcrq

Why we should all worry about the Amazon catching on fire this year – The Washington Post

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.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2016/07/12/the-ultimate-forest-fire-whatll-happen-when-the-amazon-burns/

Frontiers | Quantification of Overnight Movement of Birch (Betula pendula) Branches and Foliage with Short Interval Terrestrial Laser Scanning | Plant Biophysics and Modeling

http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpls.2016.00222/full

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.]