I was thinking how Lucky I have been to have spent so much time in nature,now I see why it is my "Religion",as Nature is the only place to find "Truth",on a continual basis.
Plato was the first one to actually use this term World Soul ,Plato said that the universe was “a Single Living Creature that contains all living creatures within it.” And that it was also “one Whole of wholes.” So this is a very modern idea, in a sense, because in the sciences we now have this idea of the philosophy of holism, or the philosophy of organism. We now know that organisms operate in holistic ways. That is the way that Plato viewed the world.
For Plato especially, and also the Pythagoreans, beauty was something very, very important about the cosmos. When we see beauty in nature, it communicates something to us. The word cosmos itself goes back to the philosopher Pythagoras, and he called the universe a kosmos because the universe is beautiful. That word kosmos means “adornment” or “beauty,” and it’s actually where the word cosmetic comes from. And so this idea that the world possesses beauty was something very important.
Excerpt from "Scientists give humanity ‘second notice’ to shape up or suffer the consequences" :
In “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice,” Bill Ripple, director of the Trophic Cascades Program at Oregon State University, and his colleagues looked at how humanity has progressed toward the targets put forth over the past 25 years. With one exception – stabilization of the ozone layer through strict regulation of ozone-depleting chemicals – they found that not enough progress has been made to avert the massive environmental problems apparent in the late 20th century.
In fact, they found most of these problems have gotten far worse.
Two big trends were “especially troubling” to the researchers. One is the significant uptick in greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels, deforestation and agricultural practices. The other is extinction.
The release of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide is driving global warming. Forests are big carbon sinks and deforestation has been widely acknowledged to be a major source of atmospheric carbon. Yet, while international conservation programs like REDD+ are seeking to curb deforestation and, with it, climate change, forests are still being lost at an ever-increasing pace. A recent analysis of satellite data showed global tree cover loss rose more than 50 percent from 2015 to 2016
Hope Ryden wrote God's Dog,a study of the North American Coyote
,a great study
Some thoughts from Martin Prechtel
“Everything in Nature ran according to its own nature; the running of grass was in its growing, the running of rivers their flowing, granite bubbled up, cooled, compressed and crumbled, birds lived, flew, sang and died, everything did what it needed to do, each simultaneously running its own race, each by living according to its own nature together, never leaving any other part of the universe behind. The world’s Holy things raced constantly together, not to win anything over the next, but to keep the entire surging diverse motion of the living world from grinding to a halt, which is why there is no end to that race; no finish line. That would be oblivion to all.
For the Indigenous Souls of all people who can still remember how to be real cultures, life is a race to be elegantly run, not a race to be competitively won. It cannot be won; it is the gift of the world’s diverse beautiful motion that must be maintained. Because human life has been give the gift of our elegant motion, whether we limp, roll, crawl, stroll, or fly, it is an obligation to engender that elegance of motion in our daily lives in service of maintaining life by moving and living as beautifully as we can. All else has, to me, the familiar taste of that domineering warlike harshness that daily tries to cover its tracks in order to camouflage the deep ruts of some old, sick, grinding, ungainly need to flee away from the elegance of our original Indigenous human souls. Our attempt to avariciously conquer or win a place where there are no problems, whether it be Heaven or a “New Democracy,” never mind if it is spiritually ugly and immorally “won” and taken from someone who is already there, has made a citifying world of people who, unconscious of it, have become our own ogreish problem to ourselves, our future, and the world. This is a problem that we cannot continue to attempt to competitively outrun by more and more effectively designed technological approaches to speed away from the past, for the specter of our own earth-wasting reality runs grinning competitively right alongside us. By developing even more effective and entertaining methods of escape that only burn up the earth, the air, animals, plants, and the deeper substance of what it should mean to be human, by competing to get ahead, we have created a brakeless competition that has outrun our innate beauty and marked out a very definite and imminent “finish” line. Living in and on a sphere, we cannot really outrun ourselves anyway. Therefore, I say, the entire devastating and hideous state of the world and its constant wounding and wrecking of the wild, beautiful, natural, viable and small, only to keep alive an untenable cultural proceedance is truly a spiritual sickness, one that will not be cured by the efficient use of the same thinking that maintains the sickness. Nor can this overly expensive, highly funded illness be symptomatically kept at bay any longer by yet more political, environmental, or social programs. We must as individuals and communities take the time necessary to learn how to indigenously remember what a sane, original existence for a viable people might look like.
Though there are marvellous things and amazing people doing them, both seen and unseen, these do not resemble in any way the general trend of what is going on now. To begin remembering our Indigenous belonging on the Earth back to life we must metabolize as individuals the grief of recognition of our lost directions, digest it into a valuable spiritual compost that allows us to learn to stay put without outrunning our strange past, and get small, unarmed, brave, and beautiful. By trying to feed the Holy in Nature the fruit of beauty from the tree of memory of our Indigenous Souls, grown in the composted failures of our past need to conquer, watered by the tears of cultural grief, we might become ancestors worth descending from and possibly grow a place of hope for a time beyond our own.” ― Martin Prechtel, "The Unlikely Peace at Cuchumaquic: The Parallel Lives of People as Plants: Keeping the Seeds Alive
“Humans are amazing ritual animals, and it must be understood that the Tzutujil, nor any other real intact people, do not 'practice' rituals. Just as a bear must turn over stumps searching for beetles, real humans can only live life spiritually. Birth itself was a ritual: there was not a ritual for birth, or a ritual for death, or a ritual for marriage, for death was a ritual, life a ritual, cooking a ritual, and eating were all rituals with ceremonial guidelines, all of which fed life. Sleeping was a ritual, lovemaking was a ritual, sowing, cultivating, harvesting, storing food were rituals, even sweeping, insulting, fighting were rituals, everything human was a ritual, and to all Tzutujil, ritual was plant-oriented and based on feeding some big Holy ongoing vine-like, tree-like, proceedance that fed us it's fruit.” ― Martin Prechtel
“Other than her daughter, there was no woman more beautiful than the Moon. And besides Old Man Fire, there was no one on earth as old as she. But the Moon was the first of those kind of women for whom age is more a sculptor, carving the young girl's original smoothness into a more complex and deeper beauty.” ― Martin Prechtel
“The secret of village togetherness and happiness had always been the generosity of its people, but the secret to that generosity was village inefficiency and decay. The House of the World, like our village huts and our human bodies, no matter how magnificent, is not built to last very long. Because of this, all life must be regularly renewed... If a house is built too well, so efficiently that it is permanent and refuses to fall apart, then people have no reason to come together. Though the house stays together, the people fall apart, and nothing gets renewed” ― Martin Prechtel
Ecological modernization is a school of thought in the social sciences that argues that the economy benefits from moves towards environmentalism. It has gained increasing attention among scholars and policymakers in the last several decades internationally. It is an analytical approach as well as a policy strategy and environmentaldiscourse
2008 Gulf Hypoxia Action Plan
Old stream channels are helping to clean up farm drainage water in north central Iowa. Restored oxbows in the Boone River Watershed reduced nitrate concentrations in tile water by about 50%, according to water monitoring data gathered by the Iowa Soybean Association.
Oxbows are ponds that form when a river’s wide meander is cut off from the main channel. These floodplain formations are very common in the prairie pothole regions of the Farm Belt.
Functioning oxbows provide many conservation benefits, including critical fish and bird habitat and flood control, says Aleshia Kenney, a biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Moline, Ill. Like wetlands, oxbows also filter nutrients in runoff and tile water from nearby farm fields, improving water quality. But over time, oxbows fill up with floodborne sediment and lose their conservation advantages, she says.
Chris Jones, an environmental scientist at the Iowa Soybean Association (ISA), has a simple method for revitalizing silted-in
oxbows: Scoop out the accumulated sediment down to the gravel streambed and re-seed the banks with native grasses. “Whenever possible, field tiles are routed into the oxbow, which can process the nutrients before the water enters the adjacent stream,” he says.
ISA worked with landowner and retired John Deere dealer Gaylord Jones of Woolstock, Iowa, and his grandson, Rory Sterling, to restore a half-acre oxbow on White Fox Creek, a tributary of the Boone River.
Jones, 96, is a devoted conservationist. He has invested in other water quality practices on his land over the years, including tree plantations on erodible ground along Eagle Creek and White Fox Creek and an edge-of-field bioreactor to treat subsurface drainage water.
“We did the oxbow restoration for both wildlife and water quality benefits,” Sterling says. The oxbow harbors hundreds of small fish and is used by shore birds, ducks, frogs and other wildlife, he adds.
The Jones project is one of three White Fox Creek oxbows coupled with drainage outlets. The project began with aerial imagery to identify comma-shaped oxbow depressions. “It’s easy to pick them out on the landscape,” says Keegan Kult, the ISA environmental programs manager who oversaw the restoration.
Because oxbows are in the floodplain, they are usually uncropped, so productive land doesn’t have to be sacrificed – a big selling point for farmers, Kenney says. The Jones’ oxbow is located in a marshy CRP area.
Plants are more than just a beautiful addition to a backyard pond. They also serve an important function in maintaining an appropriate balance of nutrients in the pond’s water. Plants not only reduce the amount of algae that is able to grow, but also use waste materials from fish, providing a natural water filtration mechanism. Choosing the right combination of aquatic plants from the four categories will help keep your pond water clean and clear without the addition of chemicals
Soil is the key to pure water.
Soil works as a physical strainer, a biochemical renovator, and a biological recycler of all wastewater passing through it. Besides a mix of sand, silt, clay, and organic matter (humus), each teaspoon of rich soil contains a million to a billion bacteria, hundreds of thousands of protozoa, up to a hundred thousand or more algae, and up to millions of fungal strands.
The soil community eliminates pathogens, turbidity, and most color and taste problems in water in five ways:
Soil harbors creatures that out-compete the pathogens for food, as well as protozoa that prey on pathogens.
The soil, bacteria, and fungi produce antibiotics that poison pathogens (penicillin is produced by a soil mold).
The soil's clay adsorbs viruses and other potential pollutants, and the water-repelling surfaces adsorb uncharged particles that could degrade drinking water supplies.
Soil's texture and structure act as a physical strainer.
The soil's moisture, temperature, acidity, and nutrient conditions are so different from those of the host that excreted the pathogens that they simply die.
Why Have a Blue Thumb?
The Problem— The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has named stormwater runoff as our nation’s biggest water quality threat. Stormwater runoff whisks pollutants from our streets to our waterways via storm drains.
The Solution— Planting for Clean Water is part of the solution to water pollution because it mimics nature and natural hydrology. In natural landscapes, rain tends to soak into the ground gradually. However, nowadays, much of the land is covered by impervious surfaces – such as streets, parking lots and roofs – where the water cannot soak into the ground. Blue Thumb plantings help infiltrate water back into the ground and stop the stormwater runoff.
Lush and lovely— Add variety and interest to your landscape by choosing from hundreds of native plants certain to flourish in a variety of soil types and light conditions. Form countless combinations of natives and design a garden that produces blooms all season long.
Lawn chair landscaping—You can practically tend your native garden from your lawn chair—they’re that easy. Natives are hardy, easily surviving harsh winters, summer heat, and even drought. Once established, native plant gardens need very little weeding, watering, mulching or mowing and so, are virtually maintenance-free.
Easy on the wallet—Hardly ever buy replacement plants, annuals, fertilizers, and pesticides again. Plus, once established, native plants need no watering, saving thousands of gallons each year. For every lawn problem, there’s a cost-effective native plant solution.
Clean water— Everyone has the responsibility of protecting our water, as streets connect to lakes and rivers through underground storm sewer pipes. In natural landscapes, rain tends to soak into the ground gradually. However, nowadays, much of the land is covered by impervious surfaces – streets, parking lots and roofs – where the water cannot soak into the ground. Instead, water runs-off rapidly through storm sewers carrying pollutants collected along the way directly into our water bodies. Stormwater runoff is the number one water quality problem facing the nation according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; what you plant in your yard to help water soak in makes a difference! Native plants and rain gardens help clean water naturally because they generally have deep root systems that anchor soil and act as filters, collecting dirty runoff from streets and rooftops and separating out pollutants while absorbing water and decreasing flooding.
Control shoreline erosion—Native plants are beneficial to maintaining shorelines, and decrease erosion by slowing down in-coming waves and anchoring soil on shore.
Eco-friendly—Native aquatic plants produce oxygen for fish and take in phosphorous, reducing mid-summer algae blooms and murky, green lake water.
Kind to critters—native plant gardens provide a natural habitat as well as nectar, pollen, and seeds for bees, butterflies, birds and other wildlife, while discouraging invasive species and the mess they leave behind.
What is a native plant?
Hundreds of years ago, the United States was covered in “native” plants — the grasses, foliage, and trees indigenous to our country — before modern settlement disturbed their natural habitat. Native plants differ from non-natives because of their complex relationship with other local organisms, acting as critical components in maintaining nature’s delicate eco-balance. Many species are known to occur across relatively wide ranges of geography, climate and environmental conditions. It is commonly understood that sub-groups of these species became adapted to various local conditions within these wider ranges. These are called “local ecotypes”. It is desirable to use the best adapted plants for a landscape project. Local ecotype native plants are clearly well adapted to local conditions. Therefore, Blue Thumb projects using native plants require local ecotype native plants. This means plant material propagated from original sources no farther than 200 miles (300 for trees and shrubs) from the project.
Using Shoreline Plantings to Stabilize Soil
Shorelines Stabilized with Riprap (rock)
Grant money is available for shoreline restoration projects
Long roots of native plants filter out pollution before it reaches the water
Attracts birds and butterflies
Flowers add color and visual continuity of shorelines around the lake
Plants take up excess nutrients reducing algal blooms
Long rooted plants help decrease flooding
Vegetation discourages geese from congregating (feel vulnerable to predators in taller vegetation)
Plants provide oxygen for fish
Aquatic plants serve as wave-breaks slowing down incoming waves
More permanent fix for erosion problems
No planning required
Little weeding required
Project takes time to plan and design
Plants take 1-2 growing seasons to establish
Weeding is necessary for the first two years
Does not filter out pollution; grass clippings wash into lake adding excess nutrients
Does not provide animal habitat (other than snakes)
Chops up the shoreline visually; each shoreline looks different leading to an overall “hodge-podge”
Does not take up excess nutrients reducing algal blooms
Does not help decrease flooding
Does not discourage geese from congregating
Does not provide oxygen for fish
Does not serve as a wave-break
Short-term fix to erosion problems
Difficult to walk on
Shorelines means creeks,rivers,drainage ditches as well!
More and more of our waterways are being starved of life through pollution. One simple, yet improbable, solution? Cover rafts in plants
Just five years ago, Fish Fry Lake was dying. The groundwater flowing into the lake situated 30 miles northeast of Billings, Montana, contained high levels of nitrogen and phosphorous, common ingredients in agricultural fertilisers and animal waste. The nitrogen and phosphorus had fostered an overgrowth of algae, which covered the lake and blocked sunlight from penetrating the surface. The deep water was a dead zone, devoid of oxygen and home to very little aquatic life.
The solution was as simple as it was improbable: cover rafts with plants, and set them afloat in the lake. Within a year-and-a-half, the algal blooms were gone. Water clarity improved. Oxygen levels rose. Today, the lake is home to a thriving community of fish, including black crappie, yellow perch and Yellowstone cutthroat trout.
10 ways to keep lakes clean
If you live on a lake, stream or wetland, plant a buffer strip of native plants along the water. If you have a lawn, keep it small and don’t use fertilizers and pesticides.
If you have a septic system make sure it functions properly and meets current standards. Consider an alternative wastewater treatment system, such as a composting toilet.
Go slow in your boat. Big wakes erode shorelines.
When you buy a boat motor, choose a 4-cycle, rather than 2-cycle, engine. You will lose less gasoline into the water and cause less air pollution.
Plant a rain garden, use a rain barrel to catch water from your roof, consider using permeable pavement in your driveway – runoff that stays on your property will not wash contaminants into streams and other surface waters.
Never dump wastes into a storm drain. Storm sewers run directly to rivers and lakes.
In the winter, use less salt on your sidewalks and driveway. Let your public officials know you support efforts to reduce the amount of road salt applied to roads and bridges. Chloride from road salt is building up in lakes and aquifers that receive runoff from highways.
If you fish, consider putting away your lead sinkers and jigs and switching to non-toxic tackle. Loons, trumpeter swans and some other waterfowl are susceptible to contracting lead poisoning from tackle they pick up off lake bottoms.
Don’t use the lake as a bathtub. Soaps and shampoos contain nutrients and pollutants that are harmful to the lake and organisms living in it.
Learn as much as you can about lakes and the threats they face. A good place to start is “Guide to Lake Protection and Management,” a 27-page brochure published by the Freshwater Society in cooperation with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency. You can download it here.
The Stream Protection Rule was a United States federal regulation issued by the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement that went into effect on January 19, 2017. These regulations implement Title V of the 1977 Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA), the focus of which were the conditions for issuing permits to begin a mining operation. The original regulations had been issued in 1979 and were updated in 1983, Litigation over mountaintop removal mining required changes to the regulations, which were issued in 2008. These regulations were in turn struck down by a judge after litigation by environmental groups. The new regulations, the Stream Protection Rule, were issued in January 2017.
They were a topic in the 2016 elections, with Republican candidates for federal office saying that they would strike the regulations down if they would be elected. In February 2017, the Republican-controlled Congress, through the Congressional Review Act, passed a bill (a "resolution of disapproval") to revoke the rule. President Donald Trump signed the legislation, repealing the rule. This left the status of regulations implementing the SMCRA unclear.
excerpt: Why the GOP Wants to Get Rid of It: Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell calls the rule “a harmful regulation that unfairly targets coal jobs” (i.e., it reduces coal company profits). “It’s just one example of the former administration’s attack on coal communities like those in my home state of Kentucky.” President Donald Trump has vowed to bring back coal jobs and abolish regulations that stand in the way of the industry. “Fortunately with President Trump, we now have a partner in the White House who understands how irresponsible and harmful these bureaucratic overreaches can be,” said David McKinley, a Republican representative from West Virginia. “Let’s get this Congressional Review Act passed as quickly as possible and send it to the president so we can protect our hardworking coal communities from this dangerous rule.”
Effects of revocation (stream protection rule)
Subsequent to the revocation of the Stream Protection Rule by the Trump administration, many scientists, when interviewed, said that it would have had an insignificant impact on the activities of coal companies.
Moreover, the US energy industry had generally reduced its use of coal in favor of cheaper natural gas and to a lesser extent renewables, and analysts said that even if the Stream Protection Rule had made coal more expensive for them, it would not have had much of an effect on the industry; its revocation meant little to them as well.
The revocation of these regulations left unclear what regulation would be used to implement the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act.
When America adopted the bald eagle as the national symbol in 1782, the country may have had as many as 100,000 nesting eagles. The first major decline of the species probably began in the mid to late 1800s, coinciding with the decline of waterfowl, shorebirds, and other prey.
It got markedly worse after World War II, with the introduction of the pesticide DDT and to a lesser degree from lead poisoning.
By 1963, with only 487 nesting pairs of bald eagles remaining, the species was in danger of extinction, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
SuSanA is an informal network of people and organisations who share a common vision on sustainable sanitation and who want to contribute to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, in particular SDG6. Learn more about our definition of sustainable sanitation here.
SuSanA came into existence in early 2007. Since then, it has been providing a platform for coordination and collaborative work. SuSanA connects members to a community of people with diverse expertise and opinions. SuSanA also serves as sounding board for innovative ideas. Finally, SuSanA contributes to policy dialogue through joint publications, meetings and initiatives.
The SuSanA website – with its library, project database and discussion forum – is an important resource for anyone wanting to explore the possibilities of sustainable sanitation.
SuSanA is not itself an organisation but a loose voluntary network to which partners and individual members contribute at their own expense.
The secretariat is currently carried out by Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH in Eschborn, Germany. More about the setup of SuSanA is explained here.
SuSanA is open to anyone who wants to join and be active in the promotion of sustainable sanitation systems. Membership is open to any individual. Click here to register. Organisations can also become formal SuSanA partners. Apply here.
Visit our FAQ page or contact the SuSanA secretariat if you have other questions.
How we work
SuSanA’s most important assets are the knowledge, experience, creativity and energy of a large and diverse membership. We focus on all the different dimensions of sustainable sanitation and the full spectrum of development contexts. SuSanA provides its members forums for discussion and analysis, structures to support collaboration, and a range of channels for effective communication.
Saturated buffers are a relatively new practice for improving water quality. This practice has considerable potential due to its reliability, effectiveness and low cost. US Department of Agriculture Natural Resources Conservation Service has approved an interim practice standard.
The advantages of saturated buffers include: low maintenance, relatively simple to install and a reasonable cost. The challenges for this practice include: site specific soil investigations are required to determine if the practice can be applied; interim practice standard complicates using this practice within Conservation Reserve Program areas; very few people have experience with site assessment, design, and installation; and a buffer of perennial vegetation is needed. The site assessment and design must assure that impacts of impeded drainage on the cropland upstream are minimal and that streambank soils will remain stable with prolonged saturation.
Additional resources: Presentation on saturated buffers and Prairie STRIPS Cleaning Iowa’s waters with saturated buffers
Bioreactor: Redirects tile water to an underground bed of wood chips where nitrate is removed naturally by microorganisms. Vegetation on top of the bioreactor can provide other benefits such as wildlife habitat.
We offer a complete solution for waste and stormwater treatment. Based at Kaiwaka, north of Auckland, we are part of the Kauri Park Groups and the first company to introduce floating treatment media to New Zealand.
5/2/2018-World’s largest dead zone identified in the Gulf of Oman — it’s nearly the size of Florida ,Remote-controlled submarines — sent forth by researchers from the University of East Anglia — have identified the world’s largest dead zone. This mass of water, spanning a chilling 63,700-square-mile (roughly 165.000 km²) area in the Gulf of Oman, is nearly devoid of oxygen. That’s an area comparable to the surface of Florida (170,305 km²), and over two times larger than Scotland (80,077 km²).- zmescience