China growth and what it means to Natural Resources

The Devouring Dragon

The Devouring Dragon

The Devouring Dragon by Craig Simmons is a gripping account of what the future holds if the developing world plays on the same playing field as the United States. China with its billions of people see the Madison Avenue  coke soda ads and what it too.

I’ve been thinking about natural resources and as an elder, with an expected longevity beyond my parents time that means I would be using more natural resources for possibly an extended life.  This is not good when you think of how many of us there are.

It is reasonable to think that with billions of people needing natural resources, there will be a great strain on the natural world to provide raw materials to house, cloth and feed more people than ever before.

What is going to happen? Edward O. Wilson wrote in The Future of Life, “The juggernaut of technology-based capitalism will not be stopped. Its momentum is reinforced by the billions of poor people in developing countries anxious to participate in order to share the material wealth of the industrialized nations. But its direction can be changed by mandate of a generally shared long-term environmental ethic. The choice is clear: the juggernaut will very soon be either chew up what remains of the living world, or it will be redirected to save it.”

Many of us are on the side to save it. I wish so for governments of all nations. Native nations, environmentalists, citizen scientists and scientists are teaching and trying to reach the masses in order to educate the public about the preciousness of natural resources. I teach on the wings of a butterfly. Jason Graham teaches about building natural nests for native solitary bees. Karen Oberhauser teaches about Monarchs in the Classroom and Journey North. There are countless others.

We simply can’t put our heads in the sand. We must plant seeds of wisdom in the hopes of regeneration of the earth.

Sources:

Simons, C. The Devouring Dragon (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 2013).

Wilson E. O. , The Future of Life (New York: Vintage Books, 2003), 156.

Advertisements

Exciting Findings Monarch Survival: An Amazing Feat

Source: News from Monarch Larva Monitoring Project (MLMP) – University of Minneapolis.

Butterfly followers may find this article of interest considering that Karen Oberhauser, Director of Monarch in the Classroom, wrote. Karen is a leading scientist and teacher in the field of monarch biology and migration. She wrote, “Mary Ellen Ryall from Shell Lake, WI, has established and dedicated a native remnant tall grass prairie as monarch habitat on 1/2 acre of city land. After a tremendous storm, she has shared an amazing story of monarch survival.”

On July 1, 2011 a straight line wind at 100 mph struck Minong, WI. It blew down 11 red pine trees on my property in the village. In the process of storm cleanup, the trees were cut and taken to the local saw mill to be turned into board foot. There was an Aldo Leopold Bench that was crushed beneath one tree. The logger brought his big equipment in and lifted the tree so that his son could save the bench.

Chrysalis after the storm. On underside of Aldo Leopold bench copyright Mary Ellen Ryall

Chrysalis after the storm. On underside of Aldo Leopold bench copyright Mary Ellen Ryall

Lo and behold a monarch chrysalis was on the bench. I thought about how the butterfly was a form of transformation and knew it would adapt to the landscape changes.  I marveled that I saw a few monarch butterflies flying about the day after the storm. How could winds of 100 mph wreck such havoc in the village and yet allow the butterflies to survive? How did the same wind that caused birds in maple trees to lose their lives allow a butterfly, the weight of a single maple leaf, to survive? It is a beautiful wonder.

“While monarchs have amazing tenacity, many individuals are not as lucky as those in Mary Ellen’s habitat. MLMP volunteer Diane Rock captured some incredible photos of monarch predation last summer…[monarch butterfly faces threats], especially as eggs and larvae, but also as adults. Several studies have shown that only 5-10% of monarchs survive to adulthood in the wild. In strong winds and other extreme climate conditions, individual monarchs stand a fighting chance, but they are often no match for the spiders, ants, stink bugs, wasps and other invertebrates that attack monarch larvae on milkweed plants. Black-beaked orioles and black-headed grosbeaks are common predators of adult monarchs in their overwintering sites, and in their breeding grounds, the adults may fall prey to spiders.

Monarch survival is an amazing feat, considering all the dangers that they face throughout the course of their lives. They appeal to all of us because of the astounding things they are able to accomplish. Research and monitoring through MLMP help us to understand the hardship that monarchs face, and areas where improvements can help support monarch populations.”

Monarch tasting my fingers and walks across to Valerian flower for nectar

Monarch tasting my fingers and walks across to Valerian flower for nectar

Source: After the Storm by Mary Ellen Ryall

http://www.mlmp.org/Newsletters/monthly/2011/mlmp_update_201110.pdf

%d bloggers like this: