Saturday, April 19, 2014

10 Important Concerns of Ecology

10 Important Concerns of  Ecology  
Dr Abe V Rotor

1. The world everywhere, from the tundra down to the rich tropical forests, faces unabated threats to wildlife destruction, as human activities continue to defile nature not only of its flora and fauna but of natural habitats.

2. While the target of conservation is the protection of plants and animals particularly those that are considered to be facing extinction and are being endangered, the greater concern of ecology is the protection of natural habitats and ecological systems. 

Imagined bleak future of our Earth, 
acrylic painting by the author

3. On another front of human activities often characterized by man’s quests for the “good life” through industrialization he believes to be the prime mover of progress and development, the production of unwanted by-products threatens the earth’s dynamic processes. Already the emission of gases from burning fossil oil has resulted in two serious consequences; thinning of the ozone layer and the building up of heat of the atmosphere resulting to global warming.

4. As human population continues to escalate which is going to double the present 7.7 billion mark by 2025, more and more people now believe that only by heeding the Malthusian prediction that our world may be spared of unimagined scenario of mass starvation and death.

5. On the other hand, quests for new frontiers of science has led us to the fore – unlocking the code of heredity that may soon replace conventional breeding, resulting thus far in the production of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) and Genetically modified Food (GMF). The long term consequences of tinkering with the gene far outweighs immediate benefits. Genetic engineering permanently disturbs the balance of nature from the food chain and food web leading to irreversible destruction of the ecosystems.   

6. The other frontier is man’s interplanetary travel beyond the distance of the moon, and for such ambitious adventure, man will have to learn to adjust to life in space and in the planets he targets at visiting. Interplanetary travel takes years, many years. Into the unknown man carries the environment of the earth in a capsule or bubble. Space biology studies not only the effect on man but to plants and animals as well – some kind of man-made ecological system in space. We have virtually started a new field, space ecology.

7. If a third world war is to come, what kind of war is it? People are in a quandary, even those who are witness to the last world war and different wars after that. On media, a third world war if really global, respecting no boundaries of politics, culture and faith. It will be a war everyone is concerned of – real and psychological, covering the ultimate warfare involving nuclear, chemical and biological.

8. On the concept of human habitat, how ideal can planning get close to it has been demonstrated in some models, which is far from the answer of what a human community should be. The crux of the problem is in drawing up a treaty between nature and man. Could this be an alternative to cities and high rise buildings?

9. Terms like ecotourism, ecomigtration, ecozones, etc. are jargons often disguised economic programs, rather than ecological in purpose. As such, projects of this kind must be reviewed in the light of ecology rather than economics.

10. Zero waste management is ideal, it is a utopia of a modern world. But looking at the experiences of industrialized countries like Japan, Germany and Norway waste is just another resource waiting to be tapped. Why not? Isn't garbage the excess of our wasteful luxurious living? ~

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