How To Get There 7/7/19

Written By: - Date published: 7:00 am, July 7th, 2019 - 73 comments
Categories: Deep stuff - Tags:

 

This post is a place for positive discussion of the future.

An Open Mike for ideas, solutions and the discussion of the possible.

The Big Picture, rather than a snapshot of the day’s goings on. Topics rather than topical.

We’d like to think it’s success will be measured in the quality of comments rather than the quantity.

So have at it!

Let us know what you think …

73 comments on “How To Get There 7/7/19”

  1. francesca 1

    Get a group together and lobby your local council…be prepared to lobby hard ..to set aside reserves for forest burial sites .

    Bury one of your own, plant a tree

    Create a forest.

    Make it a place of quiet enjoyment and restoration

     

    • Robert Guyton 1.1

      "Create a forest"

      There's the answer, right there. One each. More if you can. Help a friend with theirs. Form a team and take on a bigger space. Give excess seedlings to others. Share ideas for successful forest creating. 

      “Make it a place of quiet enjoyment and restoration”
      Then sit quietly in it and be restored. If you are poised enough, you’ll hear your next instruction 🙂
      Most likely, you’ll learn things you won’t read about in a book or on the world wide web. Your new net is known as the wood wide web.

      • greywarshark 1.1.1

        Francesca – your idea about forest burial sites is Ace!   Great idea, accompanied by the simple funeral and burial in suitable compostable coffin of agreed type by authorities is definitely the way to go.    Sometimes people can't be kept for long enough without being embalmed but if possible to have a fairly quick funeral, then that amount of polluting chemicals could be reduced also.

        Though I have a thought that sometimes the family's 'private' quick funeral is because it is a convenience for them, rather than holding a service that is a celebration of the life of their relative.    And ignoring that sometimes people are closer to friends and acquaintances than family, and those people would like to have the opportunity to honour and grieve the loss just as much as family.    That is recognising the community aspect, rather than just the family connection and duty.

    • A 1.2

      Good idea.  I know it's not new but it still hasn't been done.

      • Robert Guyton 1.2.1

        Start today. With a hand-trowel and a pocket full of seeds. Scoop, drop and tamp. Move on to the next site; scoop, drop and tamp. A forest will follow in your footsteps. Acorns, hazelnuts; start with the easy ones. Fun for kids too. 

        • Rosemary McDonald 1.2.1.1

          Fun for kids too. 

          There was this lad.  Barely in his teens and constantly primed to get pissed off at just about any old thing.  Having to accompany his younger siblings to a Kiwi cricket event where stars from the regional representative team gave hints and tips on the finer points of the Game on the hallowed turf of the Number One pitch was such a trigger.

          The lad entertained himself by filling his pockets with acorns from the trees surrounding the Grounds and placing one in each of the holes left behind by the poles holding up the irrigation system.

          He figured he was doing fielders of the future a favour by providing shade.

          • Robert Guyton 1.2.1.1.1

            Ha!

            His effort will have failed, but the precedence was set! It'll flower later when he realises there are spaces that can be accorded and not herbicides in response. The beast has a soft underbelly; strike there!

            • WeTheBleeple 1.2.1.1.1.1

              Robert. I have found an oak that produces relatively low tannins – not palatable to me but the chooks plough through them – especially with some garlic minced in… I'm spreading them about but have no idea if the next generations tannins will be as low or not. Most likely a mix of similar, plus lower and higher.

              Do you know of any specifically low tannin oak species or cultivars that might be sought to plant future food with. Or anyone? 

              The Karaka trees down back are thriving on neglect. Once a status symbol of Maori, they can produce enormous quantities of food in a small space. Food which, once prepared correctly, could make a decent dent in hunger where conventional crops continue to fail. I continue to learn about this traditional food source, in the meantime, the trees keep growing. Again, I lack any depth of knowledge of the toxic/unpalatable components of the species and the variation/s that might be found.

              These non-conventional crop types – I'm always keen on learning and sourcing more. With one eye on biodiversity – the other is firmly fixed on yields – I'm quite sure that, unfortunately, one day my neighbors will be looking to me to point them at food. (There's already a few whose diet is supplemented by my efforts).

              On planting random trees – macadamias establish quickly and easily. Get nuts off trees as the casing begins to split. Poke in ground, move on. Fruiting takes fiveish years, is slow at first, increasing exponentially as the trees do. High quality food.*

              *Hammer not included.

              • Dennis Frank

                My ex chopped down a prolific macadamia some years ago due to it shading the garden she put into the back lawn of her new home.  Dismayed, I rescued around a dozen seedlings already a foot high trampled in the wreckage, and still have one in a pot not yet given away.

                My enthusiasm for them went into recess after folks started telling me they attract rats, which then create infestations in local habitat!  You have a plan for that?

                • Robert Guyton

                  Mongoose?

                  • Dennis Frank

                    Ah, the indigenous mongoose, much-neglected & rarely seen?  "When imported into the West Indies to kill rats, they destroyed most of the small, ground-based fauna. For this reason, it is illegal to import most species of mongooses into the United States, Australia, and other countries."  https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mongoose

                    GE could be applied to design a solution.  Pheromones.  Breed a sub-species attracted to possums & rats by smell as food source, and program in an aversion to residual dinosaurs such as kiwi…

                    • Robert Guyton

                      Okay, maybe not the mongoose then (easy mistake to make); mink, perhaps? There are snakes that love to eat rats…

                      In any case, what would you rather the rats eat; the plastic casings on your electrical wiring, or a few fallen macadamia nuts? In any case, if we're starving, the rats aren't going to get a look in. There'll come a time when we'll be the ones eye-ing up the wiring!

                • WeTheBleeple

                  Rats are an unfortunate issue but are also exacerbated by every other seed bearing tree in the vicinity. Nuts are just another tree though the quality of food they produce may be a preferred food source. The beech forests are not infested because of macadamias. Should we stop growing natives too?

                  Scuse me, I get sick of garden myths and legends based on fuck all.

                  Traps. We have a resetting trap affixed to the trunk of the largest macca tree here. Five kills in the last month. We need many more citizen planters but also citizen trappers. The public jumping on board predator-free NZ is a great thing, more please. Get on board. Trees might grow by themselves but forest husbandry grows them faster and produces a lot more.

                  Key did one two thing(s) right: raising awareness of both predators, and cycling.

                  But no raised awareness on predator cycling wink

                  The rats are here, they WILL eat our food and wildlife. Kill em dead.

                  Bury the buggers on the dripline of trees they used to raid – to put the nutrients back in the system. Or feed to animals e.g. pigs, weka, dogs…

                  When I lived in the bush my dog lived on possum.

                  • Robert Guyton

                    3 things; buggering-off.

                  • Dennis Frank

                    Did you ever check out biodynamic farming?  John Pearce seems to have been the pioneer here, on his farm in the south Kaipara near Helensville.  I first saw him talk about it live in '81 in Auckland, but he's done various msm interviews since.  Anyway he applied the Steiner methodology:  burn possum carcasses and distribute the ash over the entire terrain.  Eliminated his possum problem.

                    Now sceptics will point out that this is magical thinking.  Indeed!  Yet if it works, why not?  I put my daughter through the Steiner school in Ak & her mum & I have never had reason to regret that, but I was averse to the religious fundamentalism exhibited by the teachers.  Cultic.  So I remain agnostic re his teachings.

                    Last time I saw him on nationwide television he told the reporter his topsoil is now "this deep" and his hands were a couple of feet apart.  So the system seems to work for soil enrichment too. Anyway, if it works for possum, it’ll work for rats too…

                    • Robert Guyton

                      I did (and do). Both Peter Proctor and Peter Bacchus stayed with us here in Riverton; wonderful men, deeply spiritual. I've made cow-pat pits and buried cow-horns, made composts with oak-bark, equisetum etc. and read a lot of Steiner's esoteric works. Once, a woman I'd never met called out across the room, "I know you; you're Rudolf Steiner!" I loved that, though I ain't smiley

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      I've used similar methods in aquaponic systems with pest insects. like most critters, some gut bugs/their metabolites that aid digestion are bad news outside of the gut. Specific ash has specific properties and smell. A likely deterrent – even humans with their very limited sense of smell react negatively to burning flesh and bone is even worse.

                      I've not gone the biodynamic route due to the fanatic woo factor. Am always interested in traditional methods however, and of course soil microbiology.

                      Most of the 'magic' I hear about via alternate/traditional methods might be traced back to microbiology.

                      Look for the words: ether, essence, energy, spirit, soul, ethos, life force… in old gardening texts. Mostly invisible – microbiota and their metabolites.

                      We’ve harnessed microbes long before we knew they existed. Ferments mostly.

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      That being said – I burned a bunch of oystershell one time to make quicklime. I've not been invaded by oysters since.

                      Being close to the coast, global warming may change that. 

                      I'm not averse to the methods, just the wild claims.

                    • Robert Guyton

                      Ignore the wild claims and harvest the many fruits.

                • Janet

                  Dealing with Rats in the forest garden – An enviroMate 100 TM

              • Robert Guyton

                Those acorns would be good to have, WTB. I'm guessing they are small and can fit down a hens neck. The striped acorns from the oaks that grow outside of the museum in Hamilton are a good size for hens. I don't know about the various tannin contents. The "best" acorn for human consumption features in one of the "Woodland" short-films. They're grown on a Greek Island, I seem to remember, and make great flour. They're huge. 

                I have karaka growing in my woodland, though we're well out of zone. No fruit yet. 

                Do you have Gevuina (Chilean hazelnut)? They grow and fruit well down here. I've planted several. 

                • WeTheBleeple

                  Acorns are ground as chook food. An old hand mincer does the job for my small amounts. Oaks also have the rough bark vines like to climb e.g. passionfruit.

                  Huge low tannin acorns! I'm keen, I'll try locate the film and species. 

                  Before the Hamilton Museum went in there was a boarding house there that I stayed in. Could write some interesting tales about the place and the characters there. Reg and Fiona the old hippies who ran it. Kath the inheritor of wine estates denied said heritage due to addiction to meds they prescribed her, age 13, for depression (valium! dumbass doctors). Lenny the ex-con activist…

                  No chilean hazelnut, no hazelnuts yet period, some here in a bowl a friend gave me from an AK tree – must see if I can make them pop.

                  Karaka can be toxic to bees, and dogs. I have no sympathy for dogs that run amok (well, the owners get no sympathy). For bees the issue is flowering season, and is alleviated via mixed forest, rather than karaka stands. Ideally there are many flower types available in karaka flowering season. I'm always finding negative downstream effects from monoculture…

                  Round here though, it's roundup killing the bees. A contractor comes in and does their thing on a bunch of 'landscaped' properties, my mates hive collapses. Next contractor, another hive. We need to ban these sprays, most of the rest of the world has already trashed their honey industry.

                  Variety is the key to solving many food supply issues.

                • WeTheBleeple

                  Found just the kind of link I was after, and worth sharing.

                  There's a lot of great info for foresters there. Not through the list yet but the oaks we have a lot of (Quercus alba) can take up to 40 years to fruit. Likewise the Bur oak (Quercus macrocarpa) Count your blessings if they're fruiting in your neighborhood.

                  The bur oak is what I’d want to plant in the clay soils round here.

                  Other sources speak about how some (of the same species) will have a mast year, while others a fairly regular crop (desirable). And so some American folk seed select from the annual producers for the nurseries. All in all a fun bit of swot.

                  An important deer/critter browse in the states where they'll drop fruit end of summer when much of the herb layer is absent via dry conditions.

                  With the right species the flour making is easy (except perhaps the peeling part, invite some friends for ‘coffee’). Mill them fine, add water and soak, drain, dry. Done. The tannin water has a bunch of uses. I saw some survivalist type making mouthwash out of the acorn caps…

                  laugh https://wildfoodshomegarden.com/Oak.html

        • greywarshark 1.2.1.2

          Robert – the height of trees and shrubs and location must be considered.   Having tree-mad people next to you with huge boughs that hang over your fences, and break them, drop uncompostable leaves (say magnolia grandiforia or rhus which are poisonous in every part), is not an enjoyable experience when trying to get them to take responsibility for their shade-producing, sunshine reducing mammoth.

          This was the difficulty when the settlers came here.    They had to clear spaces so they could grow food to live.    In the end they burnt them, and the fires got out of hand etc.    And we lost the huia, amongst other things.  

          The city council don't want trees springing up everywhere.    I have a marvellous liquidambar that is great.   But the leaves colour beautifully then fall in stacks.    The cones are prickly and I have to take a 2 litre icecream box and fill it up with these small but hard things every time I mow to keep a reasonable sward.    I wouldn't choose to have it again as a street tree and will get it pruned slightly to keep it from developing too wide a spread.    I think I may be able to talk with the contractor and ask him/her about the best way to do it.

          So Robert though you were being positive about how easy it is, and we should do it as much as possible, keen people can be irresponsible.  I wonder if the Council could set aside an area where random planting would be okay, and within that area have a marked area that is open for planting, which gets moved regularly for the next lot of tree planters.    Also ask that people mark their planting with its type on say white plastic (recycled) 1 metre slats written in large letters preferably using black or blue permanent felt tip pens (not provided by Council).

          Have any Councils started with this sort of scheme? I would like to know if land has been set aside to give opportunity for people to plant trees of their choice in an approved area that is accessible to the population and not difficult terrain to manage. If not time to talk to them about it, and the various ways that it could be managed.

          People could even plant in plantation areas for certain native trees that would become commercially usable in future years in rotation. Then there are Australian hardwoods, no eucalyptus though, but one I think Tasmanian blackwood – very good. Let us have a few exotics that aren’t pine. And there could be an area allocated to wilding pines just to get the tree numbers up rather than treating them all as pests. All trees are good, but some are gooder than others is a view, for prioritising types and places.

      • veutoviper 1.2.2

        There is actually quite a lot going on already around NZ to provide natural burials including in forests etc.  I have a comment with a lot of links to details re what is already happening awaiting moderation – probably because of the number of links in it!

        Pretty please to any moderators

        Any change of my comment being released from moderation?  thank you. 

        I didn’t realise how many links came up until after I submitted it and didn’t copy it. Unfortunately it has now disappeared off my screen as well but can recreate with fewer links if necessary.

        • Incognito 1.2.2.1

          Only just saw it; it’s been approved.

          • veutoviper 1.2.2.1.1

            Thanks Incognito.  I got quite excited when I say how much was already going on in relation to francesca's proposal that I lost sight of the number of links!

      • patricia bremner 1.2.3

        Francesca,   In Rotorua Cremation tree trust park. they put a park to this use,  but cremations only. It has grown into a beautiful area, with  a variety of natives and flowering introduced species. People wander through looking at the name tags. A peaceful spot by a man made pond and waterfall.

        A burial forest/bush would need more thought and care not to pollute,  However there must be suitable areas for this type of planting burials.  No coffin,  just a shroud or perhaps a cardboard coffin or base and shroud.  Food for thought.  Back to nature.

        • veutoviper 1.2.3.1

          Hi Patricia, there is lots more information re natural burials, including what is currently allowed re coffins, shrouds etc in the links in my comment at 1.3. – eg the one on Coffin standards. 

           I have now read the post re Whangarei being the first to have burial grounds in an existing natural forest and the following link shows what is and what is not allowed – with photos of burial plots in the forest:

          http://www.naturalburials.co.nz/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Cemetery-Information-Pack-Burials-2018.pdf

          If Whangarei can do it, why not elsewhere?  

          [As an aside, I replied to a late night comment from you a week or so ago, but perhaps you did not see it.  Just hoping that your hip has repaired well and you are back to dancing!   Well not quite that, but hope all is well – six months down the track.] 

    • veutoviper 1.3

      Great idea francesca, and there are already some moves along these lines.

      Your post promoted me to google "natural burials NZ".  There are a lot of links there which I don't have time to check out fully today but others might like to.

      https://www.google.com/search?q=natural+burials+nz&rlz=1C1LDJZ_enNZ499&oq=natural+burials+nz&aqs=chrome..69i57j0.8074j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

      This one caught my eye however 

      https://www.naturalburials.co.nz/

      ""We are the not-for-profit organisation that introduced certified natural burials to New Zealand and advises local councils on how to establish natural burial cemeteries across the country.

      We promote, certify and monitor cemeteries, coffin makers and funeral directors for adherence to our standards. We advise consumers of their rights.

      What is a natural burial? Check our description here."

      Below the above on the front page are a series of questions and answers which provide some information about what is happening around NZ with natural burials.

      Below these questions and answers, there is a list of recent posts which include one in Oct 2018 about Whangarei cemetery being the first in an existing forest!  (Haven't read it yet).

       There is also a list of Essentials – links more information on the following subjects:

      There seems to a lot going on already, information available, and groups to join!

       

      • greywarshark 1.3.1

        I did not go to this funeral but know the people here in Nelson.   Lovely people who are the 'salt of the earth'.     You get a feeling of the care and love and community they have created in this video.    They were Dutch immigrants and as most recent immigrants (it seems to me) have committed to integrating with all NZs so have Maori as well as pakeha connection.   Note that they throw in flowers which is a more lovely covering to say farewell with than handfuls of dirt.  Jo is always one who looks to the positive.

        (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p3qoQGSxAU0

    • Pingau 1.4

      This was mooted for the red zone in Christchurch but was rejected for the same reasons the land was red zoned – as the area is prone to major earthquake damage and flooding (can't have bodies popping up I guess). Still aiming for a forest though!

      • greywarshark 1.4.1

        Could have as a series of swamps with salt-accepting plants and coastal trees.   Have they started on this in Christchurch or are they still working out a grand plan and can't bear to start with small pilots but want to produce something big and expensive?

        • Pingau 1.4.1.1

          Greywarshark – there is a draft plan that was the result of much work and decent public consultation that was produced by Regenerate Christchurch. This plan is now with the minister for Greater Christchurch Regeneration Megan Woods for either approval or rejection.  It has taken an age so here's hoping it will get through.

          There is a mixture of proposed uses such as a white water park, tiny house community on the fringe of the red zone, a mahinga Kai area and there is a definate push for overall ecological restoration. Housing (except on a few small marginal areas) has been rejected as has a large flat water lake.

          The group I support, Greening the Red Zone, is advocating the majority of the 600 hectares of the Avon-Otakaro river area be returned to native forest and wetland. Some groups have started with tiny "temporary use" areas such as little patches of bush that ex-residents had in their back yard. Also there are other projects that have started eg a very successful community garden in Richmond red zone which is aka the "Riverlution".

  2. Robert Guyton 2

    If we could clothe the planet in woodland, disaster would be averted (we could breathe easy).

    If the woodland consisted of a complex variety of plants; trees, shrubs, vines and so on, we could fashion everything we need for living well (we could all eat well).

    If we managed the "woodland" for maximum complexity, it would withstand the pressures of a rough climate and the novel organisms that will continue to migrate to new sites (think; marmorated stink bug, giant willow aphid).

     

  3. Dennis Frank 3

    "Project Drawdown was founded in 2014 by environmentalist Paul Hawken to measure and model the most substantive solutions to stop global warming, and to communicate those findings to the world."  https://www.drawdown.org/about

    It was Hawken who wrote The Magic of Findhorn (1975).  His enterprise now:  "a thought leader and communicator, Project Drawdown is shifting the global conversation about climate change from “doom and gloom” defeatism to one of possibility, opportunity, action, and empowerment." 

    The action is on the solutions page.  "Each solution reduces greenhouse gases by avoiding emissions and/or by sequestering carbon dioxide already in the atmosphere."

    https://www.drawdown.org/solutions

    • Robert Guyton 3.1

      That "Solutions" page on the Drawdown website is a door through which "HTGT" readers can wander and be inspired. 

      " shifting the global conversation about climate change from “doom and gloom” defeatism to one of possibility, opportunity, action, and empowerment." 

      Yeah, well,  that's the only way through. All thought leaders and communicators worth their salt should be acting in that manner. The doom and gloomers, while sincere, are suffering from the same death-wish that infests civilisation generally, or at least the Masters of Civilisation who prefer to plummet spectacularly, rather than devolve their power and be as everyone else is; human. 

       

       

      • Dennis Frank 3.1.1

        Quite correct, Robert.  The time for collective funk is behind us now.  Understandable that those who haven't been paying attention are finally getting the message twenty years late and are depressed by it – we just have to tolerate the contagion of negativity they are (probably inadvertently) generating.

        • Robert Guyton 3.1.1.1

          Not only do we have to keep our own peckers up, we have to prop theirs up as well smiley Once through the "funk", they'll be very useful.

          • WeTheBleeple 3.1.1.1.1

            Absolutely, hence the recycling of a comedy career. I know what I'm doing, but need a platform to share said knowledge. The ecology will come with the conversations after the shows.

            There's a few convergent issues I can tackle from stage. Starting the conversation is rarely easy, make it hilarious and it's dead easy – without putting folks through the pain of being held-hostage by another overly-earnest soy eating flake at some party.*

            *Soy is 90% transgenic, monoculture plus poisons, and is turning large swathes of South America to desert.

            • Robert Guyton 3.1.1.1.1.1

              Soy probably ain't doing that; more likely the soy-growers (hazarding a guess; I don't like to blame plants for anything at all smiley

              • WeTheBleeple

                Any soy-eater thinking they have the moral high ground over omnivores is deluded.

                Yes, the growers are big Ag. Deforestation and liberal application of poisons for all.

                • gsays

                  You have articulated the issue with the whole " go vegan, it will save the world".

                  I don't deny that eating less meat  and local seasonal vege is the way to go.

                  That is a long way from full vegan and all the diesel miles and dodgy chemicals and dubious science (G.E.)

                • greywarshark

                  I had heard that all almost all soy grown now is from GE beans.  If so that means that the crop seeds are owned by a company that has their genes patented.    So under corporate control – one the best protein plant options there is.   Is this true or partly true or a misunderstanding?

                  • WeTheBleeple

                    That question has already been answered above.

                    • greywarshark

                      Oh thanks.   There has been such a marvellous crop of info I haven't covered it all.    You are providing marvellous compost on this post, so much is flourishing, we have a food forest of words.   Poetic eh!

                    • WeTheBleeple

                      Not bad. Here's a line on manure

                      'And love can make the flowers grow, cos really, it's just shit'. 

                      I'm tense as I'm performing new material later and it make-a-me-nervous. Doesn't matter how competent you might be, new material is an out-on-a-limb experience.

                      Here's a new climate joke: Rude word/potential nasal spray warning.

                      Polar bears are leaving the arctic and mating with brown bears now. An endangered species attempting to breed with a similar species to save itself.

                      That's why Tories fuck pigs.

                    • greywarshark

                      I think you will get your audience with you on that.   It seems from the glimpses I have seen, that young adults are up for quite pointed satire.

  4. Dennis Frank 4

    "I reached out to the environmental psychologist Renee Lertzman. She explained that when we receive information charged with fear, dread or anxiety, the limbic system in our brain can be activated, which can override the prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain associated with creative thinking and problem solving. These days our news feeds are filled with images and stories of a bleak future. This is what we bombard our consciousness with, the images we expose our children to and they may also be why many of us feel paralysed when it comes to taking action on solutions to save our planet."

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/may/21/determination-and-passion-how-these-renewable-energy-resources-can-save-our-planet

    "Over the last three years I’ve been making a film called 2040. It’s a visual letter to my daughter showing her what the world could look like that year if we put into practice some of the best solutions that exist today. I call it an exercise in “fact-based dreaming”, as everything I show her in the future has to already exist today."

    "In this solution-based approach, I had to be careful to avoid a Pollyanna offering. The realities of intensified weather events by 2040, blocks to progress by vested interests, lack of leadership, trade treaties that favour profit over environment and our addiction to endless growth all had to be navigated."

    "But, although these are extremely important issues, they are not the provinces of the story I wanted to tell. This is a film highlighting what we can fight for rather than fight against. Determination and passion are the most important renewable energy resources we have. People working together with a common goal will shift vested interests and make implementing the solutions possible."

    • Robert Guyton 4.1

      That's wonderful. The importance of "Determination and passion are the most important renewable energy resources we have. " is something I've been banging on about, with my velvet hammer, for a long time now. Most people are talking technologies and clever ploys, but I've been saying, look to your spirit and keep it bouyant; without hopefulness, no clever initiatives are going to fly. So thanks, Denis, for the link to others saying something like that also. 

  5. veutoviper 5

    I was conflicted as to whether to bring this to attention here or on yesterday's "with enough Trees" post, but in view of the discussions at 1 and 2 above, decided to post it here.

    The first interview this morning on RNZ National's Sunday programme after the 7am news was a short 6 minute interview between Jim Mora and Jim Salinger, ie:

    "Planting billions of trees to mop up Co2 is ultimately a sensible idea, says Dr. Jim Salinger, but it has to be done in the right way, with recent research showing you have to regenerate natural forests to store carbon — as opposed to plantation forests of trees like pine trees. He joins Jim to explain."

    Well worth a listen for Dr Salinger's very clear views on the preference for planting/regeneration of natural forests. 

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/sunday/audio/2018703008/dr-jim-salinger-billion-trees-programme-ultimatley-flawed

    • Robert Guyton 5.1

      veutoviper, thanks for that. Jim Salinger is correct in saying that what he does, however I smile wanly at the "recent research" aspect; the awareness that forests should be raised in as natural a way as possible, mirroring the manner in which they do it when left to their own devices, is not a new idea; observers of forests have known this since forever. Scientists, otoh, have blinded themselves to this since science. Humans though, can ignite the process "artificially" and must; there's no time to lose. Our brainy brains and global reach mean that now we can act like a forest god and create like our lives depend upon it.
      Edit: I’ve listened to it now, and believe the Salinger interview should be required listening for all New Zealanders. Thanks again, veutoviper.

      • veutoviper 5.1.1

        You're welcome.   Even at that ungodly hour on a Sunday morning, Salinger came across as well worth listening to, so figured a lot of people may have missed that interview. 

        I have always had mucho respect for Salinger. 

        By the way, I have been revisiting various previous series of posts etc here on TS on subjects relevant to the How posts and was thinking we should all perhaps revisit these – and perhaps look at them through fresh eyes, eg what has changed in the interim, what have we learnt, where have the priorities changed or need to change etc.

        Will think more about this more over the next week or so and try to put something together for here for discussion. Have already started putting together a subject index for them as a first step.

        • Robert Guyton 5.1.1.1

          A review would be valuable, veutoviper, and revealing too, I'm guessing. We are experiencing an acceleration now; perhaps you feel this also, and we will be very busy with this sort of discussion from here on in.

        • greywarshark 5.1.1.2

          That would be really good veutoviper.   I have been trying to gather up comments and the occasional whole post and put them onto this How to from the beginning but have missed much I am sure.    There was some yesterday that were very much to the point and I will transfer some or post links, (trying to remember the hints about enclosing individual links within a sentence that a thoughtful commenter put up recently).

    • greywarshark 5.2

      This is Shane Jones comment on Salinger's suggestions.

      https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/morningreport/audio/2018703118/jones-rejects-criticism-of-billion-trees-climate-change-impact

      Forestry New Zealand figures show in the first year of the scheme, only 12 percent of the 91 million trees planted were natives. A short time ago I spoke to Shane Jones. He says the grant scheme has dedicated two thirds of its funding to native trees.

      A great start for the first year, but I seem to remember that it is not a huge amount more than normal.    The mind boggles at the number and the workers who put them in.   Or is it done by machinery in flatter areas?

  6. Robert Guyton 6

    Will the sale of mittens fall?

    Will ash be the new snow?

  7. AB 7

    We must have been unconsciously heeding Robert's advice today – the boy and I went volunteer tree planting at Waitawa Regional Park south east of Auckland. It was on a steep bit of ground – with a breathtaking view across the southern part of the Hauraki Gulf to the Coromandel Peninsula on a pristine winter morning. There were a lot of people there – mostly Chinese and Indian rather than native-born kiwis interestingly. And I was impressed at how much manual work a large number of people can get through in 3 hours.

    We ate a barbecued sausage and pork dumplings afterwards (the latter courtesy of the vocal and happy Chinese contingent,) It was a fine experience – even though to me it felt a little like a sad elegy to what will be lost. Mostly I was proud of the boy negotiating the steep kikuyu-entangled ground with his walking stick, de-bagging the trees to go in the holes I dug and pausing to try and snap photos of the fantails as they paused and pirouetted on the fence battens.

    • Robert Guyton 7.1

      Well done, you two. You've made me look very pedestrian; I haven't planted a single tree today; mind you, the night is young and I have a torch! 

    • greywarshark 7.2

      Kia kaha to you both AB.   When you have your next drink, toast each other and saw Mauri ora!     (Good health)

      If non Maori speakers want to start using a few Maori phrases and get a bit of swagger into the conversation –

      https://www.omniglot.com/language/phrases/maori.php

  8. greywarshark 8

    WtB has probably put up this on mushrooms/fungi.    Lots of info and could be the ground-breaking thing we should know.

    6 ways mushrooms can save the world | Paul Stamets This was from 2008 – you can bet it hasn’t gone far in the intervening 11 years. Let’s grow the ideas exponentially now. Start a mushroom group mushrooming!!

  9. Dennis Frank 9

    "On the day before I posted this essay, humans burned around 100,000,000 barrels of crude oil, 21,000,000 tons of coal, and 9,000,000,000 cubic meters of natural gas. We burned around the same amount the day before that, too, and we’ll burn the same amount today, tomorrow, and the day after. The vast majority of all the energy human beings use—well over 80%, including nearly all transport fuel—comes from those three forms of fossil carbon. (Solar power and windpower, despite all the ballyhoo, account for only about 3% of total energy production worldwide.)  All that carbon has to come from somewhere, and all of it goes somewhere else once it’s burnt."  https://www.ecosophia.net/the-long-view/

    The Archdruid has been leading a group forum on sustainability & resilience for the past decade, while publishing books about it for longer.  He also discusses how his autism gives him a unique perspective on life sometimes.  He has more natural insight into deep psychology than most informed commentators.  Here's how he reveals that Trump emerged on cue, in the context of a century-old prediction by an influential historian…

    "Oswald Spengler, for one, wrote about the events splashed across recent headlines more than a century ago in the pages of The Decline of the West. He noted with dry Teutonic amusement how democracy turns into plutocracy as soon as the well-to-do learn to use money to manipulate the political system, how this leads to the rise of clueless elites too busy lining their pockets to notice what the policies that enrich them are doing to the rest of society, and how ambitious men—as often as not from within the plutocratic class—realize they can rise to power by championing the cause of the deplorables of their time."

    "Spengler called the charismatic populism that results from this process Caesarism, after one of the more memorable examples of the species. (It’s a running joke here on Ecosophia to refer to our current American example as the Orange Julius.)  The conflict between institutionalized plutocracy and insurgent Caesarism, Spengler showed, is an inescapable historical event once a society finishes its millennium or so of growth and settles into its mature form.  He predicted back in 1918 that this conflict would be the defining theme of politics across the western world after the turn of the 21st century. Look at today’s news and it’s hard to escape the realization that he was right."

    He then discusses how Arnold Toynbee, "more cautious and more meticulous than Spengler, avoided prophecy and contented himself with precise description of the way the process worked out in the past. In his analysis, successful societies thrive because their governing classes form what he called a creative minority—a group that wins the respect and emulation of the rest of society because it is able to come up with creative solutions for the problems that face a civilization in the course of its history. Too often, though, the governing classes stop innovating in any way that matters, and become more interested in trying to force problems to fit their preferred set of solutions than in adapting solutions to fit the current set of problems. They then become what Toynbee called a dominant minority, which no longer inspires respect and settles instead for grudging obedience."

    "Once a society is saddled with a dominant minority, there’s a set of standard moves that people within the society use to try to deal with problems that the people in charge are no longer trying to solve. Unless you live under a damp rock, dear reader, you already know all of them. Toynbee calls them detachment, transcendence, futurism, and archaism. Detachment abandons society to its fate by going back to the land, or off to another part of the world, or inward to a subculture airtight enough to shut out current events. Transcendence is the turn to religion—Spengler calls it the Second Religiosity—which comes in the latter days of every civilization, as people frustrated by this world place their hopes on another. Futurism is the attempt to build, or at least daydream about, a perfect society in the future. Archaism, finally, is the quest to Make (insert name of society here) Great Again by rejecting a failed status quo in favor of policies that worked in the past."

    JMG writes that "all four of the standard moves can be viable options, and futurism and archaism in particular can be political dynamite. The managerial upper middle class of modern Western industrial society, the creative minority turned dominant minority that runs the institutionalized plutocracy of our time, took over from an older generation of plutocrats in the wake of the Great Depression by way of futurism, borrowing the charisma of technological change by defining the changes that would give them more power as “social progress.” In the usual way of things, the first moves in that direction worked fairly well, the later moves not so much; for forty years now it’s been an open secret—outside the airtight bubbles the privileged inhabit, at least—that things have been getting steadily worse for most Americans in a galaxy of ways. The inevitable blowback followed."

    He then explains why the zeitgeist selected Trump:  "In the long run, in other words, it doesn’t actually matter much whether or not Donald Trump wins a second term in next year’s election. (In the shorter run it matters a great deal, which is why I expect a bitterly fought election with plenty of vote fraud on both sides.) Trump has shown a rising generation of populist politicians that the neoliberal consensus can be defeated, and that there’s a growing and vocal constituency for politicians who reject the neoliberal habit of making token gestures toward environmentalist and social justice ideologies whenever the costs can be pushed off on the working classes, while shilling for the intertwined interests of corporate and government bureaucracies on every issue that matters. There’s still a lot of turbulence ahead, and plenty of tectonic shifts will jolt the political landscape in the years to come, but the neoliberal era is dead".

    • Dennis Frank 9.1

      The essay drew the usual range of comments, and here's a thought-provoking one:  "the carbon tax here in Canada charges paper and plenty of foods a trumped up rate while exempting things like avocados, airlines, telecommunications, and others. In fact, given one of the quirks of it, airlines actually make money off of it. The quirk is basically that international flights aren’t charged the tax, while the airlines get to deduct all flights they make and get a refund as if they were charged the tax on everything."

      "Thus, it’s a scheme to steal from the poor and give to the rich while claiming it’s addressing climate change. I think this is shown quite starkly by a simple detail one of my friends pointed out to me: it’s only passenger flights which get the funds back. Shipping things by air, which is how most of the goods used in the territories (which are among the poorest parts of the country) get there, is charged the carbon tax."

      Well, that would be because it's a product of democracy.  Govt lawyers always draft the legislation.  Devils in the detail & text must satisfy the powers that be…

      • greywarshark 9.1.1

        Thanks for that interesting alert DF.    Clever buggers eh.    Only eternal vigilance by citizens can keep legislation on the track for which it was intended it seems.

        When Dr Ranginui Walker wrote his book – Struggle Without End he was concerned with Maori and their efforts to maintain their rights, and recognised the strength of the elite against them.    We can draw on his points as we have all been colonised by the free market, that wants us to give up all our lives, hopes and dreams so those at the top can proceed to grab the biggest piece of pie.  

        And there is never a pie big enough for all their wants as the sick lemmings go on their mad way to grasp, have everything and leave desiccation, damage, destruction and desolation behind.

  10. greywarshark 10

    This may be referred to earlier but I have just seen it and thought I'd get the link here.   It starts off – 'An area the size of the US is available for planting trees around the world…'

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/world/393725/climate-change-trees-most-effective-solution-for-global-warming

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) said that if the world wanted to limit the rise to 1.5C by 2050, an extra 1 billion hectares (2.4bn acres) of trees would be needed…

    The scientists from ETH-Zurich in Switzerland used a method called photo-interpretation to examine a global dataset of observations covering 78,000 forests.

    Using the mapping software of the Google Earth engine they were able to develop a predictive model to map the global potential for tree cover.

  11. greywarshark 11

    A little heart warming talk which I think will cheer and inspire.

    (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iB4MS1hsWXU

    David Brooks TedTalk on plumbing – that is the soul and finding bottom and rising again with it in your fist – triumphant.

  12. greywarshark 12

    Planting hills – cleared land:

    https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/67940611/   Read more stories from NZ Lifestyle Block magazine   Nadene Hall 09:07, Apr 22 2015

    Five organic ways to get rid of NZ's worst farming weed (refers to gorse)

    …The seed ball method

    This works on a similar premise but it takes longer to see the results. Gorse provides a natural protective barrier for trees that can grow beneath it.

    Seed balls can be thrown (or launched!) into an area and left to germinate as nature intended. You will just have to put up with unsightly gorse for a decade or so.

    To make a seed ball you will need a mix of seeds – choose trees that don't mind an acid soil and are preferably fast growing.

    Depending on what part of the country you are from, kanuka, manuka, tauhinu, toe toe, tutu (toxic) or hebe varieties will be the best option – these are hardy plants that grow quickly and are nature's choice as the pioneer species, hence the reason unkept farmland almost always reverts to "scrub" containing these plants. Other options may include members of the pittosporum family. Check with your local nurseries for advice on the types of pioneer natives that do well in your area.

    If you want to be very eco-friendly, collect seed from pioneer plants in your area – this is called eco-sourcing and means that you are perpetuating the strains of trees for your area, as opposed to seed that may have been collected from a different part of the country.

    Seed may also need to be cleaned and/or stored. For example manuka needs to be dried out and stored in a dark place. Some seeds require soaking or stratification (chilling).

    You will also need a good source of compost, some red clay and some water.

    Collect 'compost' from beneath the types of trees you want to grow. This should contain beneficial bacteria and hummus that suits that particular tree. Use a sieve to remove stalks and leaves, then dry out in a shady place.

    For the clay, use a red clay – dig a deep hole and scrape the clay out from the bottom of it so you avoid adding weed seeds to your mix.

    Dry it out, then grind it down so it becomes fine. The clay will protect the seed ball from predators, once you've scattered it in the area you want to revegetate – once it is exposed to good rain, it will naturally break down allowing the seed to germinate.

    To make a good seed ball, you need one part seeds to three parts compost, to five parts of clay.

    Coat the seeds in the compost, then add the clay and a little water so you get a good dough. You should end up with a small ball about the size of a marble – leave these somewhere to dry for a few days.

    When you are throwing/firing/rolling seed balls into an area, aim for 10 every square metre or so. It is better to over sow, so seedlings only have to fight each other for space, rather than more competitive weed species.

    • greywarshark 12.1

      And don't know if this has gone up but fits here so I'll put it.

      https://www.rnz.co.nz/national/programmes/ninetonoon/audio/2018703481/gorse-for-the-trees-how-one-man-brought-back-a-forest

      ,,,Native trees don’t have seed banks, they rely on dispersal, he says. “The production and dispersal of seed by nature, we completely underestimate it, there’s nowhere on Banks Peninsula where this [regeneration] wouldn't happen, even if you were some distance from existing seed sources…

      “I said the fastest it would happen would be in moist gullies, that would happen in about 10 years, the natives would over top the gorse and form native canopy and maybe 30 years on the dryer, higher ridges….

      He says the tallest native regenerated bush on Hinewai is eight meters tall….

      Hinewai is an example of how marginal land can be transformed and help New Zealand reach it’s one billion trees target, but planting radiata as part of this programme is “folly,” he says.

      “Planting it for timber’s one thing –  but planting it for carbon sequestration to me is just a monumental folly.

      “Climate change is a monumental folly, but why replace it with another monumental folly and all over New Zealand? The potential for this marginal and often weed-infested hill country is huge it’s much cheaper than planting, it's much simpler, you've got to do the right things, it won't just happen without some management, but the potential is huge and this is a lovely example of it.

  13. greywarshark 13

    Copied and transferred from OM 12/7.   A new way of looking at a pest.   We did it with venison so can we get the hearty men on the trails up the dales – we used to pay a bounty on things to keep them under control.   Let's try the control thing, and then see how we can at least make enough to keep them and other pests down.

    David Mac 3.2.2

    12 July 2019 at 10:53 am

    I think we should be breeding possums. We obviously have the ideal climate. Possum fur groans with international potential. The fibres have extraordinary near unique 100% natural insulation qualities. Only the Possum and Polar Bear have hollow fur fibres, body heat extends out to the tips. The meat makes great pet food.

    The Scandinavians love all natural products and pay top dollar to beat their very nasty winters. As do many damn cold locales, Canada etc.

  14. greywarshark 14

    Copied over from om sat 13/7

    WeTheBleeple 7.1.2.1

    13 July 2019 at 10:38 am

    Here's a relatively comprehensive talk on industrial hemp for some history, historical application and potential for applications.

    We have some farms trialing hemp now, and I believe legislation has allowed its use for human food now? Is going to?

    I can make a hemp (seed meal) & honey steam pudding that's pure goodness!

  15. greywarshark 15

    Copied over from om 13/7

    WeTheBleeple 7

    13 July 2019 at 9:36 am

    In the future (and today's research), conventional plastics will be biodegradeable.

    Scientists have already discovered an enzyme that breaks down PET, and within a wireworms microbiome lies the secrets to breaking down polystyrene. The search is on for more promising enzymes, and how we might harness them upon discovery.

    Leading the charge is consumer demand for sustainable products. Those without the tech will lose more and more public support, and as alternative options become available, consumer led protest over polluters will see government support withdrawn and even government opposition to recalcitrant industry.

    While we see enormous resources today dedicated to PR and legal fees to hide/justify industrial activities, the far easier and cheaper way will be to work with ethical and environmental consideration.

    Nature to aid tech:

    https://www.globalcitizen.org/en/content/plastic-bottle-waste-eating-enzyme-mutant/

    Leading vehicle manufacturers are switching to EV production. Oil companies to carbon capture techniques and investment in renewable research and development. 

    In the interim, we need to plant 1.2 trillion trees. 

    Tech to aid nature:

    https://www.standard.co.uk/news/world/treeplanting-drones-could-help-restore-world-s-forests-a4116376.html

    Reply

    • James Thrace 7.1

      13 July 2019 at 10:10 am

      If the boomers could understand the difference between hemp and marijuana, what a difference that would make.

       

      2 crop cycles of hemp remove the same amount of CO2 from the atmosphere as 30 years of pine trees. 

       

      Hemp is also a far more sustainable, low impact crop. It also regenerates the soil and isn't required to have rotation planting like so many other crops do.

       

      Hemp is wonderful. There are so many functional uses for hemp, and way more sustainable than trying to develop enzymes.

      Reply

      • WeTheBleeple 7.1.1

        13 July 2019 at 10:21 am

        Excellent thoughts/facts. It was the cotton growers started the whole reefer madness/hemp ban to my (limited) knowledge.

        Using hempcrete, hemp fibre… we could sequester the carbon FAST using hemp crops for building. And the seeds make top notch oils.

        The enzymes are required to remove the enormous volume of plastic pollution we have.

        Reply

      • marty mars 7.1.2

        13 July 2019 at 10:23 am

        So true – hemp is a wonderful plant – you can pretty well use all of it – I can't understand why farmers aren't getting serious about creating diversity by laying some hectares in hemp – get out of the way regulation – and for the numbnuts – your dope people don't like being near the hemp too much – too much pollen floating around.

        Flax too – we used to have a whole industry for this and we can get it back again – get ready to create more wetland, plant more flax, clean more rivers for transport, fix up the old docks and so on and before you know it we will have travelled back in time to the future.

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