Without land, water, and culture, we are nothing
“Deranger: The river systems are the life, and … grandmother moon, grandfather sun— everything is alive. When you’re raised with that relationship, that the foxes are your cousins and the eagles are your brothers, you start to have a totally different relationship and interaction with everything around you. And so much of humanity has lost that. But indigenous people have retained it somehow.
If you kill the land, the waterways, the air and culture of those people, you essentially kill those people. And that, in fact, is the definition of genocide.” Eriel Deranger of Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation
New Scientist 13 February, 2014
Setting fire to coal underground could answer our energy prayers, or start an environmental disaster on a bigger scale than ever before
Surely they wouldn’t do this, or would they?
Ethanol industry is back in the black after some rough years. Boom times are back in the ethanol business. Major producers of the corn-based fuel are reporting record returns for the fourth quarter thanks to dramatically lower corn prices, increasing demand for motor fuel and strong ethanol exports. Minneapolis Star Tribune, Minnesota
I’ve suspected this all along. Fracking, polluting precious ground water and ethanol production, feeding vehicles instead of people, is not about lower prices for the consumer and a better life for US citizens. No, it is about exports and one of the factors in the 1% which is now .8% and rising.
Why should a corn farmer be concerned about nutrition and soil conservation with poisons readily available and corn prices high enough to afford them, when the crop will be used to feed cars? Wrecking the soil, which is an asset of the people, is ecocide and an insult to our grandchildren.
Woodman, spare that tree!
By Tim Radford
LONDON, 26 January – Giant trees could play a giant role in fixing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This counter-intuitive discovery â€“ surely, young faster-growing trees would be more efficient at soaking up carbon? â€“ emerges from a study of more than 403 species by a consortium of 38 scientists in 16 countries who report in Nature.
Nathan Stephenson of the US Geological Survey and his 37 colleagues between them studied data collected from more than 650,000 individual trees on six continents over a span of 80 years to show that the world’s oldest trees actually grow more quickly, and also accumulate carbon more rapidly than younger, smaller trees.
Are we Guardians of the Planet?
1. one who looks after, protects, or defends: the guardian of public morals.
Darkening of the Light
Witnessing the End of an Era
by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
In the Introduction to Darkening of the Light by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee, we find:
“But this gift of light was also a test for humanity…and has forgotten our ancient purpose as guardians of the planet.”
Not only do I have no idea who or what religion, spirituality or movement decided that we have this ancient purpose. It certainly was not Jewish or Christian. According to Genesis, God has given us the planet to have dominion over. I am aware of my ignorance and will try to find out.
We just cannot have it both ways. Either we see the oneness, the non-dual in our beingness as the Earth, or we see the duality as we, creatures of the Earth protecting the other that we choose to call Earth. The bark is the tree, there is not the bark and the tree as a duality. Yes, our language allows us to split and divide, carve up things so that we can speak of the tree roots, the tree bark, tree limbs, tree leaves, but still without these what we call parts, what we observe wouldn’t be a tree. It is our thinking function that gets hung up on dichotomys. Our science rips living things apart and then pronounces on what “it is.”
Guardianship may have ancient beginnings, but our science supports a non-dual understanding of how we are in the world. Even to see ourselves as IN a world out there is to err.
There is no duality, no “out there” and “in here.” As Vadim Zeland has said, the world is a mirror of your attitude towards it. The Gnostic text The Gospel of St. Thomas that didn’t make the cut by the early “holy” fathers of the church, remarks something like: When the inner becomes as the outer, there is the Kingdom of God. Another biblical source says that the Kingdom of God is within you. [Luke 17:21] So, we may see that actually, the world is also within you, not “out there.” So, if there is no “out there” and “out there” is really within us and we are “within” the planet both physically and spirituality, then what we have is oneness, true oneness. From the perspective of planets, stars and galaxies, they are not “out there” either, so they are a oneness. From here it is not too far out for those who speak of oneness with the Universe.
Now this is my thinking function rattling on. How do I feel? Can I sense oneness in my everyday interaction with what I think of as out there? Well, since I cannot and do not want to part with my mate and buddy, the thinking function, I’ll just call it a both/and and leave it for now as I set forth for my daily bread walking among the birds, insects, grass, trees, bushes, clouds and feeling joyful knowing that I know and I am known.
How long has it been since we’ve read a comment about population? Why is it so unpopular for someone, me for instance, to suggest that fewer people mean fewer energy requirements? I read recently that there are virtually no places on Earth that do not carry the footprint of humans and not many more places where you will not hear human made noise. Mid and southern California skies on a clear day are a spiders web of vapour trails destroying any hope of beauty in clouds. We study and publish statistics about sustainability and species extinction or diminishing from eating out their habitat. Are humans not doing that? Must all sparsely settled places, quiet woods and meadows be destroyed to feed and shelter more and more people? Lastly, where do you expect those millions who will soon be starving from drought and flooding from rising sea levels will demand to live? Let’s face it, they will occupy our last remaining open spaces driving out most wildlife except rats, seagulls and cockroaches.
It is so good to read good news. Let us keep it coming.
“In 2012 the world crossed an ominous threshold. A reading of 400 parts per million [ppm] of atmospheric carbon dioxide was recorded by monitoring stations across the arctic. That is at least 50ppm higher than the maximum concentration during the last 12,000 years, a period that allowed us to develop agriculture and civilization.” At the Edge of the Roof: The Evolutionary Crisis of the Human Spirit
From Spiritual Ecology Edited by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
Quote from loc 574 on Kindle Edition
“On May 9, the daily mean concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere of Mauna Loa, Hawaii, surpassed 400 parts per million (ppm) for the first time since measurements began in 1958.”
I am saddened by what appears to be either a misprint [“during the last 12,000 years…”] or a misunderstanding of how CO2 and temperature varies profoundly [at least over the last million years] in an approximately 120k year cycle of around 90% massive glaciation and low average atmospheric temperature and a 10% is the interglacial period of approximately 12,000 years. Up until the present interglacial period, human population has had from very little to no effect on these cycles. These cycles have been authenticated by several research projects of which the Russian Vostok station in East Antarctica is arguably the most well known.
Also well documented and validated is the behaviour of the atmospheric temperature and CO2 ppm which varies with much the same pattern. Thus, we can observe from a graphical presentation that both temperature and CO2 rises sharply to a sharp peak and then almost as quickly plunge. Details may be found here: https://www.google.gr/search?q=vostok+core+samples&espv=210&es_sm=122&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=bPzLUtG1G
So my point here is that all recorded cycles reveal high CO2 content during the peak of the interglacial warm part of the cycle. CO2ppm will always be the highest during the peak of the interglacial part of the cycle.
What then is the point?
What I suggest IS the point, however, is that the graphs of various ice core drillings reveal that CO2 has never been this high in at least a 800,000 years. Average temperature have been this high or higher before but never CO2ppm.
It has been 3.6 million years since CO2 has been this high. http://www.skepticalscience.com/pliocene-snapshot.html
I don’t need to reiterate just why CO2 is a problem. Both common sense and overwhelming scientific research and scientist’s consensus point to anthropogenic factors involved here. Just what are they? The most well known factor is, of course, the human industrial infrastructure that burns such huge quantities of fossil fuels at a rate exceeding what Gaia can balance out and/or absorb. Thus the greenhouse effect is driving average global temperature up. I won’t repeat the well known details of what has been driving temperatures in the past. See: http://www.earthenspirituality.com/glogal-warming/
The Gaia Theory
There is another factor which is seldom cited. It seems to only come to mind when the obvious question is asked. I admit, the question appears to only be obvious to a few, myself included.
What has driven the temperature down sharply at the end of previous interglacial warming periods?
So much talk and media exposure is spent on what is causing the warming. However, we may be overdue for the temperature drop. The details of our present Holocene period reveal that the temperature did level off around two thousand years or so and began to drop. Painfully obvious is the fact that it is now rising.
Now let me be clear. As I mentioned above, all the cycles are different and our present one cannot be predicted to any extensive degree of accuracy. Not only do we not have historical details to compare with, but after all we are dealing with a living being and living organisms do not behave like a machine in preciseness. Why we expect this and how well funded climate change deniers capitalise on lack of preciseness is the subject for another paper at some other time.
Let me answer the question above. We have a lot of scientific evidence to support the analysis of what starts the warming for the rapid temperature increase and ensuing start of an interglacial period. Not much has been documented about how the tail end, the cooling is forced. Melankovitch cycles are a major part of it, but I suggest that they need augmentation. The juxtaposition of the planet’s angle to the sun’s radiation and the sun’s distance do decrease, but these factors don’t appear to be able in themselves decrease the CO2 content and thus decrease the greenhouse effect. So what does?
Trees. Yes, billions of trees, bushes and tall grass that slowly follow the melting glaciers northward in the northern hemisphere and southward in the southern hemisphere. This vegetation not only sucks up tons of CO2 but from transpiration helps form significant cloud cover whose overall effect is to increase the deflection of the sun’s radiation more than their addition to the greenhouse effect. Could we look back at the endings of previous interglacial periods, we would see these billions of trees and miles of long grass and savannah constantly pulling CO2 from the atmosphere; reducing the greenhouse effect adding to the decreased insolation and thereby causing a sudden tipping point for the temperature decline. The complete halt in forest harvesting and massive planting is simply the least expensive and most overall beneficial action that could be taken to mitigate the effects of the greenhouse effect. There are now sacred cows in India; there could be sacred trees worldwide.
By Douglas Fischer
The Daily Climate
The largest, most-consistent money fueling the climate denial movement are a number of well-funded conservative foundations built with so-called “dark money,” or concealed donations, according to an analysis released Friday afternoon.
The study, by Drexel University environmental sociologist Robert Brulle, is the first academic effort to probe the organizational underpinnings and funding behind the climate denial movement.
It found that the amount of money flowing through third-party, pass-through foundations like Donors Trust and Donors Capital, whose funding cannot be traced, has risen dramatically over the past five years.
In all, 140 foundations funneled $558 million to almost 100 climate denial organizations from 2003 to 2010.
Meanwhile the traceable cash flow from more traditional sources, such as Koch Industries and ExxonMobil, has disappeared.
The study was published Friday in the journal Climatic Change.