Saturday, November 7, 2015

Open Letter: Post Keystone Win, Time to End Natural Forest Logging

More old-growth forests have been lost
than the climate and biosphere can bear
An open letter/essay addressed to climate change luminaries Bill McKibben of 350.org and Michael Brune of the Sierra Club: After yesterday’s significant yet symbolic Keystone pipeline victory, not only must the climate movement demand an end to old-growth forest logging; it is time to speak of ending all natural forest logging to limit climate change and sustain the biosphere. Together with leaving fossil fuels in the ground, working for an end to industrial logging of natural forests will protect vital old-growth and allow dwindling natural ecosystems to age, recover, spread, reconnect, and sequester carbon in order to avert the worst impacts of climate change while avoiding global ecosystem collapse.
Again, loss and diminishment of terrestrial ecosystems are a critical component of abrupt climate change and is collapsing the biosphere. You both are well placed like few others to do something about it. – Dr. Glen Barry
Earth Meanders essays by Dr. Glen Barry, EcoInternet, Honolulu, Hawaii

Dear Bill and Michael,

Congratulations to the climate change movement, 350.org and the Sierra Club, and yourselves for stopping the Keystone tar sands pipeline for now. Our own tiny EcoInternet was pleased to play a bit part with affinity actions since the beginning. I am writing once again to raise the issue of old-growth forests – and natural forest ecosystems in general – with you in regard to climate change.

Post Keystone, as the movement gears up to make sufficient demands to limit abrupt climate change and avoid ecosystem collapse, now is the time to address large amounts of emissions from natural forest logging – particularly of old-growth. While producing tar sands results in more carbon than conventional fossil fuel extraction, tar sands still account for less than 1% of global greenhouse gas emissions. On the other hand, various estimates place loss and diminishment of terrestrial ecosystems at 20% of global emissions.

This does not mean that tar sands should get a pass, as their emissions may yet grow considerably. But it does mean that at some point the climate change movement – to be successful – will have to consistently and vocally address the loss and diminishment of terrestrial ecosystems. Given their rapid loss and diminishment, efforts to protect naturally evolved ecosystems must ramp up with all haste.

I am writing this letter to plead with you to get the Sierra Club and 350.org’s vast resources committed to working for an end globally to industrial scale old-growth forest logging while allowing managed natural forests to regenerate and age. There is no path to global ecological sustainability, which includes limiting climate change, that does not include such a course of action.

Read full essay at EcoInternet...

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