A Seedy Friend

I met Paul Kilburn at the turn-off into the Rocky Flats Nuclear Weapons Plant, decommissioned a few years before. Paul and his volunteers had permission to collect native seeds from the buffer zone around the facility that had been created to provide both a security barrier from outside intrusion and physical separation from what was […]

Is it Hot in Here?

I remember running out the back door across the hot cement patio to the safety of the cool grass of the lawn. Going barefoot in Texas most summers made me extremely conscious of the surface I walked on. We learned where the patches of goathead stickers were, where the gravel was scattered on the sidewalk […]

Anthropause

“As factories grew quiet and traffic dropped, ozone levels fell by 7 percent across the Northern Hemisphere. As air pollution across India dropped by a third, mountain snowpacks in the Indus Basin grew brighter. With less haze in the atmosphere, the sky let more sunlight through. The planet’s temperature temporarily jumped between a fifth and half of a degree.” […]

Hurrying Evolution

“The argument between “sparing” and “sharing” as a conservation tool has been raging since researchers first coined the terms more than a decade ago.”                                                 ~ Fred Pearce Most people, and almost all scientists, see the effects of climate change as threatening our very existence, since every species on Earth is interconnected and dependent on […]

Urgent Biophilia

“When we sow a seed, we plant a narrative of future possibility,”                                                 ~ Sue Stuart-Smith Yes, things are kind of crappy right now. We’ve got this incredibly bad pandemic keeping us mostly housebound for the last year and killing hundreds of thousands of Americans and millions worldwide. We’ve had four years of white supremacy, […]

The Myth of Peak Stuff

“Scientists say the weight of human-made objects will likely exceed that of living things by the end of the year.”                                                 ~ Helen Briggs A good friend warned me years ago about peak oil, when the production of oil from the Earth reached its peak, and the amount of oil remaining would continuously decline, exacerbating […]

Refuge

“I skate to where the puck is going to be, not where it has been.”                                                 ~ Wayne Gretzky My mail, email and Facebook feed are deluged this season with fundraising requests from a variety of environmental and social groups showing endangered species and abused animals that need my money to be saved. Obviously, […]

Idle Lands, Idle Hands

Idle hands are the devil’s workshop                                                 ~ Proverbs 16:27  The pandemic seems to have exacerbated a whole raft of social and economic problems. Personally, as a retiree, I find myself limited in the things I normally would do, such as shopping, travel, eating out, visiting friends, and even my volunteer activities. I can’t imagine being […]

In Our Nature

“They say I’m old-fashioned, and live in the past, but sometimes I think progress progresses too fast!”                                                 ~ The Lorax by Dr. Seuss When I first started a garden, I rented a rototiller to break up the stiff soil, made neat rows and added fertilizer with every seed. It worked out reasonably well, but […]

A Bug in Your Ear

… It is not a sentimental but a grimly literal fact that unless we share this terrestrial globe with creatures other than ourselves, we shall not be able to live on it for long.                                 ~ Joseph Wood Krutch “The truth is that we need invertebrates, but they don’t need us. If human beings were […]