Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Here's another reason to create urban forests

Because the natural ones are going to burn.

Click photo to enlarge

I just read this article while waiting for a plane and it made sober reading. 

It looks like we're about to enter a vicious circle that goes something like this:

a) the climate warms

b) forests suffer more bush fires (drier conditions, more lightning)

c) the carbon locked up in forests is released into the atmosphere

d) the climate warms even more

As the article says, we can quickly find ourselves in a "dangerous feedback loop".

I don't know if our "artificial" urban forests can combat such large scale mayhem but we've got nothing to lose by trying that's for sure. If nothing else it might at least mitigate the severity of the thing.

Anyone for Mars?


  1. NASA have discovered 9 planets that 'may' be habitable, far far away. Perhaps nuclear energy enthusiasts could build themselves a machine to take themselves & their energy of choice to one of these. Meanwhile, back here on Earth, we have reality, and forestry. There is nothing 'artificial' about an urban forest. Nature is everywhere. it is in our guts, in the cracks in the pavement, in the toilet and blowing in the wind. What we must do is recognise this, and harness that energy, the energy of nature, of life. Understand how life desires to grow, to uplift and overwhelm, and design the structure of our cities support and enhance this. The infrastructure we already have, collecting and storing water etc could be out to much better use "soil is the cheapest place to store water" - Bill Mollison, and he was talking about farming - think of it in the context of a city, trees and evapotranspiration. Think of "fire retardant" species, and how these are also great amenity trees for cooling, and have the most compostable leaves, and deciduous trees in the solar passive design realm. Think of using not just WSUD and harvesting stormwater etc but also Grey Water, and then, to be even more water savvy, dry composting toilets. Now the urban forest could just thrive - without wasting a single drop of precious drinking water. To combat mayhem maybe. To have some more water saved up for those emergencies at least. And more trees.

    1. I originally wrote "artificial" then changed it to artificial assuming people would know what I meant. I've changed it back to "artificial" as my assumption was clearly wrong.