Like Legos

“… it was all about refurbishing and reusing existing buildings. Wainright’s meaning is much more sophisticated; we may not keep every building forever, but if they are designed for deconstruction we can keep using all the parts. That’s the way to truly ban demolition.” ~ Lloyd Alter It was a hard lesson for a young […]

Crystal Ball

“A somewhat converse and counter-intuitive development has taken place in some northern countries. Typically, cold and arid, these areas have seen significant improvement in agricultural growing conditions as global temperatures continue to rise … These regions are becoming popular destinations for populations that have lost their habitable homeland to climate change.” ~ Lloyd Alter We […]

Down and Dirty

“It’s like magic,” he explained, “You drop a seed into the dirt, add a little water and you get squash! It’s like Jack and the Beanstalk.” The kindergartener was all excited after his day at school where the teacher had talked about plants and growing — and I had to bite my tongue as I […]

Bug Me No More?

“Climate change, loss of natural habitats and overexposure to pesticides are among the factors contributing to the decline of insects, including once-common species of flies, butterflies, beetles, bees and numerous others. More than two-thirds of all caddisfly populations have disappeared in the past decade.” ~ Johnny Wood The smell of insect repellent pervaded the camp […]

Apocalypse When?

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning.” — Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore (Robert Duvall), Apocalypse Now   It seems that everything is apocalyptic these days. Certainly, politics are out of control, with our vast chasms of differences between political parties and even among liberals and conservatives. It’s easy to envision an immigrant apocalypse, […]

Home, Home in the Mall

Christmas shopping used to be a delight. The decorations, fake snow and Christmas trees, incessant Christmas music, kids lined up to see Santa and his elf and maybe a few reindeer — it was all a pageant of wonderful dreams. The sidewalks were crowded with shoppers loaded with bags and boxes and the ever-present Salvation […]

Urban Species

“Cities are the 21st century’s dominant form of civilization — and they’re where humanity’s struggle for survival will take place … Half the planet’s population lives in cities. They are the world’s engines, generating four-fifths of the global GDP … As the economist Ed Glaeser puts it, ‘we are an urban species.’” ~ Robert Muggah […]

Dances with Climate

“It is because persistent warnings from scientists are so much starker in the wake of the IPCC’s (climate change) report last October. And most of all, it is because record heat, fires, storms, droughts and species decline show we are hitting ecological limits. There is no margin left.” ~ Jonathan Watts So, We’ve been dancing […]

Nature Persists

“From a coyote’s-eye view, you could see what the trees were up to: Growth, failure, decay and the drip of acid water through the gravel were mixing a dirt out of the detritus. This hideous forest, I suddenly realized, was there to repair the damage done, and not at our bidding. Its intent was not […]

Subsurface

“Descend, bold traveller, into the crater of the jökull of Snæfell, which the shadow of Scartaris touches (lit: tastes) before the Kalends of July, and you will attain the centre of the earth. I did it. Arne Saknussemm” ~ From Jules Verne’s Journey To The Center of the Earth One of my favorite movies as […]