British Columbia: Old Growth Forests and Climate Change

This article relates to this post: http://bit.ly/DFjj

The old growth forests remaining are some of the healthiest left on the planet, one of the last remaining deep dark green patches of the Earth. A place where carbon is absorbed, stored and sequestered for future life, a place where Ultraviolet Radiation is absorbed and diminished, not reflected back into the atmosphere where increasing forms of radiation accumulate and destroy the life preserving systems of gases protecting this planet. The study done saying old growth forests are dying has been extrapolated from places where increasing drought, due mostly to vast deforestation, development and overgrazing is increasing…places like California, Oregon and inland areas.

Coastal old growth is green and lush, what little is left of it, and it is still being logged, the largest trees left on the continent are still coming down due to profit motives, government funding and a reticence to bring about positive change. In Clayoquot Sound, on the west coast of Vancouver Island, Canada, where thousands of people protested the continued logging of the ancient forests, what remains is still healthy, producing naturally young trees and giving deadfall habitat to nuture a vast array of life. The forests of this area are shattered by the logging that continues and the few areas of dense green are being encroached on daily with helicopter logging and more road building. The lack of governmental action to curb corporate greed and private profit at the expense of this Earth and all life, leaving accountability to the public which is constantly ignored, is hard to understand.

The complacency of humans in the face of this government and corporate greed and ignorance is understandable, considering the great effort people have taken to say “enough”, but is thrown back in people’s faces until all are suffering from the destruction. It doesn’t take any further examples or scientific “studies” to show that deforestation is one of the great causes of climate change, creating more carbon than all the vehicles on land and in the air combined. What and why hasn’t this been stopped? For the sake of a few jobs? For the sake of a few corporate executive’s profits? No one is winning in this rapid slide to extinction. Wildlife, fish, and land and water are showing the results of this onslaught of ignorance. Wild salmon have crashed on the coasts, killer whales are starving, penguin populations are falling drastically, polar bears are threatened, black bears and grizzlies are starving, the oceans are becoming devoid of life, landslides, siltation, dams and pollution plug the waterways.

Human choices are directly connected to the diversity of life, when these options are lost, our choices are reduced and this is taking place faster than anyone can keep up with. Economically, it is a reflection of the state of the world but nowhere do people mention this destruction, very few places put a stop to it. The Congo and some places like the Dominican Republic (next to Haiti) have stopped some of it. Even Japan has ceased logging its ancient forests. But as Canada’s forests, in the interior of the country and in B.C., where they have been so badly mismanaged, die off due to lack of soil integrity and consistent pillaging, Canada denies any further protection, busily selling off what is left. The trees aren’t forever, nor are we, but there is the ability to turn this destructive process around. It is a “mental” and physical crisis that needs to be changed now by saying “no” to any further deforestation. Perhaps then, this Earth will understand that we may be worthy of inheriting a future. For All Our Relations, Susanne Hare, Clayoquot Sound

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Comments (2)

richardJanuary 28th, 2009 at 7:25 pm

Great site – but I’d sure like to know at least bit about the location of the photographed trees…

Coder30October 22nd, 2009 at 2:30 pm

Inspirational ideas start from story telling individuals, get refined in small groups and then start to spread. ,

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