Deserts to Grasslands to Forest

The famous TED Talk by Alan Savoy about changing deserts to grasslands was first on my YouTube watchlist today. This was after I read this wonderful blog post by Sacred Sueños, a darme un the Andes where the forest was burnt down in 1999 to bring in cattle… And afterwards was used for corn and other crops, until the land was unusable anymore and it came into their hands.

The message is this:

After we have brought grazing animals to the land, whether it be desert land that is unusable, or grasslands, if we want it to become forest again or even crop land, we need another step.

We have to give it chance for succession if we want it to be productive again. We need to allow it to feed and for the soil to grow with mulches and leaves from trees and bushes, for the microbes and organisms to live within it.

It really makes sense. There is a wonderful video about a professor from the US going back to his native land in Africa, where the people were struggling to eat from the land, and creating a new biome with water and forest through agroforestry.

The traditional way of agriculture isn’t working for us. It will be our undoing, as it has been for so many cultures before ours. This is the power of history: let us learn from it and not make the same mistakes.

Rainforest Burning Investors

Here is a report by Amazon Watch of beneficiaries to the burning of the Amazon Jungle. Yes, folks, it’s happening again.

As a CNN article stated yesterday, Bolsonaro called it lies, but “evidence shows differently.” There is illegal logging and slavery happening. China is the biggest buyer of products from the Amazon… but who buys the end products? The report gives advice for governments on how to deal with the issue, and long lists of companies that are investing in the carnage. Some of ways we can combat it:

1. To write to the companies with which we are investing and express our dismay at their irresponsibility… and if at all possible boycott them if they don’t respond.
2. To reuse and recycle, not buy new furniture.
3. To invest with green investors and companies that are trying to go green.
4. To donate to NGOs like this one, so that we can get more quality information and someone is out there working to stop what is happening.

The Amazon Rainforest provides us with many things that we need — Alive. Not in our kitchens or living rooms.

Click to access 2019-complicity-in-destruction-2.pdf

https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/19/americas/brazil-amazon-fires-bolsonaro-intl/index.html

The real Lord of the Flies: what happened when six boys were shipwrecked for 15 months | Books | The Guardian

Perhaps there is truth in the magic of dates. On September 11, 1999 an unimaginable tragedy occurred in New York, as America woke up to the crumbling and enflamed Twin Towers.

On September 11, 1966 on the other hand, a story of warmth and humanity contradicting what has been taught in American High Schools for so long, was happening in Australia. This story reframes humanity and gives hope.

When I was in high school and junior high, almost all of the books we were forced to read were dark accounts of humanity, the evils of society and our world. The Grapes of Wrath, Of Mice and Men, and The Lord of the Flies are titles that everyone recognizes. My fellow students and I all wondered why we were subjected to a deluge of darkness at the dawn of life, and rightly so.

Now I see this wonderful story, the true story of the Lord of the Flies, not written by a bitter drunkard, but by the true history of six boys stranded on a deserted island and how they survived for a year and a half all alone by the goodwill of their hearts, comraderie, and their sheer determination.

I have often thought that literary education stands to change. I believe it is ridiculous that our youth should be subjected to suffer through these books, when much more optimistic ones abound. And clearly, as it is proven here, that dark view of society is simply not the only truth, and certainly not the only one we should be giving our next generation. I call for a cleansing of the shelves, a reevaluation of what is important so that we can envision and create a brighter and more human future.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2020/may/09/the-real-lord-of-the-flies-what-happened-when-six-boys-were-shipwrecked-for-15-months