GarryRogers NatCon News
Nature Conservation News and information for animals, plants, and nature. See more at http://garryrogers.com.
Curated by Garry Rogers
May 5, 2015
Photo: Arizona Capitol by Mark Coryell
"Sierra Club just released its 2015 Environmental Report Card for the Arizona Legislature and Governor. The first regular session of the 52nd Legislature wrapped up quickly – in only 81 days – which was a good thing as the session was focused on taking Arizona backwards, one bill at a time.
"Legislators trashed local control by prohibiting ordinances to limit plastic bags and other “auxiliary containers” and banned cities from implementing energy-saving benchmarking, too – all in one bill. This makes Arizona the first state in the nation to ban plastic bag bans, a dubious distinction. To take the Grand Canyon state backwards further still, legislators passed four bills to seek control of federal public lands through various means and passed a memorial opposing protection of public lands around Grand Canyon."
My home state (embarrassing).
Feed the world, and cut greenhouse gases? It can be done, scientists say. Photo courtesy USDA.
GR: Briefly perhaps, but a lasting solution requires cutting human population.
To save our planet’s biodiversity – something that’s essential for our survival as a species – could biologists worldwide be united behind a single common purpose?
GR: Wilson and Carroll reach general agreement that biologists need a common purpose that will save life on Earth, but they do not produce a unifying statement. Major ideas discussed are education, biological inventory, and protection. The gist of the discussion is that we need biological scientists to turn away from molecular biology and human concerns and dedicate themselves to inventorying, studying, preserving, and protecting species. I have to agree. It seems pointless to expand our life span if there are no safe places left in which to live.
Erin Brodwin says along with international travellers often travel dozens of tiny hitchhikers - foreign plants, insects, and sometimes other animals too.
GR: Human sailing ships that began crossing the oceans 500 years ago gave a tremendous boost to natural plant and animal dispersal. Though some plant seeds can blow or float across the oceans, most cannot. Many, however, can stow away in cargo and on ship hulls. Regular human travel across deserts and through the jungles began even earlier. A friend once counted the plant seeds in car-wash drains and found more than 400 species. Human assisted dispersal is continuing and after global warming and habitat destruction, is the most critical impact that humans have on natural ecosystems. If Elon Musk and Pope Francis can convince our leaders to solve the global warming crisis, we can turn our attention to other critical issues including population and pollution.