Natural Wetlands Quotes

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...we need to remind ourselves that natural systems are much more finely tuned than we think, and if we like the way they currently work, then we should try very, very hard to not screw with them.
Rowan Jacobsen (Shadows on the Gulf: A Journey through Our Last Great Wetland)
Every country should be content with the blessings of God; lakes, rivers, landscape, seas, mountains, beaches, wildlife, valleys, mangroves, wetlands,deltas etc.
Lailah Gifty Akita
For human beings to degrade the integrity of the earth by causing changes in its climate, by stripping the earth of its natural forests or destroying its wetlands; for human beings to contaminate the earth’s waters, its land, its air, and its life—these are sins.” For “to commit a crime against the natural world is a sin against ourselves and a sin against God.
Nathaniel Rich (Losing Earth: A Recent History)
Today an estimated 13 percent of birds are threatened, according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature. So are 25 percent of mammals and 41 percent of amphibians, in large part because of human activity. Hydropower and road construction imperil China’s giant pandas. The northern bald ibis, once abundant in the Middle East, has been driven almost to extinction by hunting, habitat loss, and the difficulties of doing conservation work in war-torn Syria. Hunting and the destruction of wetlands for agriculture drove the population of North America’s tallest bird, the whooping crane, into the teens before stringent protections along the birds’ migratory route and wintering grounds helped the wild flock build back to a few hundred. Little brown bats are dying off in the United States and Canada from a fungus that might have been imported from Europe by travelers. Of some 300 species of freshwater mussels in North America, fully 70 percent are extinct, imperiled, or vulnerable, thanks to the impacts of water pollution from logging, dams, farm runoff, and shoreline development.
Rebecca Skloot (The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2015 (The Best American Series))
Another readily detected biomarker is Earth's sustained level of the molecule methane, two thirds of which is produced by human-related activities...[including] burps and farts of domestic livestock. Natural sources...include decomposing vegetation in wetlands, and termite effluences. At this very moment, astrobiologists are arguing over the exact origin of...the copious quantities of methane on Saturn's moon Titan, where cows and termites we presume do not dwell.
Neil deGrasse Tyson (Astrophysics for People in a Hurry)
If you allow a creek to go back to being a creek, if you let the trees and the bramble get overgrown, and you let the stream overrun its banks whenever it wants to, the wetland will take care of itself. The water that trickles into the ocean will be clean and pristine if everything is just left alone to work the way it was designed to work. Earthworms have shown that they can take care of the soil in the same way that a wetland takes care of the water. Nature regenerates. It Cleans. It hides a multitude of sins.
Amy Stewart (The Earth Moved: On the Remarkable Achievements of Earthworms)
Deep underground, microbes turn half a century's worth of city waste into methane. The gases and leachate are extracted through an extensive network of subterranean pipes and then used to power 22,000 nearby homes. While 150 million tons of garbage gradually decomposes unseen below the surface, above ground, the former dump reverts to meadows, woodland and saltwater marshes, providing a haven for wildlife and a massive park for the people of New York. This is Fresh Kills in the 2020s. In 2001, the infamous landfill received its last, and saddest, consignments - the charred debris of the World Trade Center. Since then, it has been transformed into a 2,315-acre public park. Three times bigger than Central Park, it is the largest new green public space created within New York City for over a century, a mixture of wildlife habitats, bike trails, sports fields, art exhibits and playgrounds. This is poisoned land: fifty years' worth of landfill has killed for ever one of the city's most productive wetland ecosystems. Restoration is impossible. Instead, a brand new ecosystem is emerging on top of the toxic garbage
Ben Wilson (Urban Jungle: The History and Future of Nature in the City)
The Blue Mind Rx Statement Our wild waters provide vast cognitive, emotional, physical, psychological, social, and spiritual values for people from birth, through adolescence, adulthood, older age, and in death; wild waters provide a useful, widely available, and affordable range of treatments healthcare practitioners can incorporate into treatment plans. The world ocean and all waterways, including lakes, rivers, and wetlands (collectively, blue space), cover over 71% of our planet. Keeping them healthy, clean, accessible, and biodiverse is critical to human health and well-being. In addition to fostering more widely documented ecological, economic, and cultural diversities, our mental well-being, emotional diversity, and resiliency also rely on the global ecological integrity of our waters. Blue space gives us half of our oxygen, provides billions of people with jobs and food, holds the majority of Earth's biodiversity including species and ecosystems, drives climate and weather, regulates temperature, and is the sole source of hydration and hygiene for humanity throughout history. Neuroscientists and psychologists add that the ocean and wild waterways are a wellspring of happiness and relaxation, sociality and romance, peace and freedom, play and creativity, learning and memory, innovation and insight, elation and nostalgia, confidence and solitude, wonder and awe, empathy and compassion, reverence and beauty — and help manage trauma, anxiety, sleep, autism, addiction, fitness, attention/focus, stress, grief, PTSD, build personal resilience, and much more. Chronic stress and anxiety cause or intensify a range of physical and mental afflictions, including depression, ulcers, colitis, heart disease, and more. Being on, in, and near water can be among the most cost-effective ways of reducing stress and anxiety. We encourage healthcare professionals and advocates for the ocean, seas, lakes, and rivers to go deeper and incorporate the latest findings, research, and insights into their treatment plans, communications, reports, mission statements, strategies, grant proposals, media, exhibits, keynotes, and educational programs and to consider the following simple talking points: •Water is the essence of life: The ocean, healthy rivers, lakes, and wetlands are good for our minds and bodies. •Research shows that nature is therapeutic, promotes general health and well-being, and blue space in both urban and rural settings further enhances and broadens cognitive, emotional, psychological, social, physical, and spiritual benefits. •All people should have safe access to salubrious, wild, biodiverse waters for well-being, healing, and therapy. •Aquatic biodiversity has been directly correlated with the therapeutic potency of blue space. Immersive human interactions with healthy aquatic ecosystems can benefit both. •Wild waters can serve as medicine for caregivers, patient families, and all who are part of patients’ circles of support. •Realization of the full range and potential magnitude of ecological, economic, physical, intrinsic, and emotional values of wild places requires us to understand, appreciate, maintain, and improve the integrity and purity of one of our most vital of medicines — water.
Wallace J. Nichols (Blue Mind: The Surprising Science That Shows How Being Near, In, On, or Under Water Can Make You Happier, Healthier, More Connected, and Better at What You Do)
For Charleston and Rossville residents, the forest around Clay Pit Ponds was an irreplaceable natural area with native and industrial history. In 1951, Parks Commissioner Robert Moses proposed filling in the freshwater wetlands with trash to prepare the land for development. The Federation of Sportsmen and Conservationists, the Staten Island Museum, and the Audubon Society teamed up to save the seven ponds in the preserve, home to herons, ducks, muskrats, and bitterns. “I can’t imagine any park commissioner in the world permitting the dumping of garbage into such beautiful ponds,” said W. Lynn McCracken, chairman of the Park Association of Staten Island.
Sergey Kadinsky (Hidden Waters of New York City: A History and Guide to 101 Forgotten Lakes, Ponds, Creeks, and Streams in the Five Boroughs)
Unlike human laws (and the Malthusian approach), the natural laws of ecology do not discriminate on the basis of race, status or bank account balance. Simply put, there are not enough resources on the planet to feed a human population that is growing and consuming like we are. We are killing the coral reefs, the forests, the wetlands and the oceans. And we are violating the third law of ecology: "There is a limit to population growth because there is a limit to the planet's carrying capacity." We are literally stealing the carrying capacity that could support other species, and that is a violation of the first law of ecology: "The strength of an ecosystem depends on the diversity of the species that make up that ecosystem." Decreased biodiversity has an impact on everything else; it's the second law of ecology, the law of interdependence. In other words, the increase in the human population is contributing to a decrease in the carrying capacity, and that has an impact on our interactions with other species. It reduces our chance of survival even further and makes a future for us on this earth unlikely. The human population must stabilize itself and if we don't do it voluntarily, nature will look after it for us. Were that to happen, our numbers would be reduced in a very painful manner over which we would have no control. I am not religious, but I think that the four horsemen of the Apocalypse - famines, epidemics, wars and civil strife - will reduce the human population and [bring about] the loos of planetary carrying capacity. (p. 118-119)
Paul Watson (Captain Paul Watson: Interview With a Pirate)
The solutions have been clear for years: keep these fossil fuels in the ground. Transition into clean energy like solar power, wind power, consume less, and stop destroying the trees and mangrove swamps and wetlands and other natural ways the earth already has of getting carbon emissions out of the air.
Aya de León (A Spy in the Struggle)
For humans to cause species to become extinct and to destroy the biological diversity of God's creation, for humans to degrade the integrity of the earth by causing changes in its climate, by stripping the earth of its natural forests, or destroying its wetlands, for humans to contaminate the Earth's waters, its land, its air, and its life with poisonous substances, these are sins.
Patriarch Bartholomew
The adjective “intact” is earned by encompassing at least 500 square kilometers—which is roughly 125,000 acres—free of roads, power lines, mines, cities, and industrial farms. That’s the size of about 60,000 soccer fields, 146 Central Parks, or a single square of land 14 miles on a side. “Landscapes” is added to the term because natural forests have vital treeless places, such as rivers, lakes, wetlands, and mountaintops mixed in. In 2008, the group helped map all such forests globally. Worldwide, there are currently around 2,000 intact forest landscapes, or IFLs, comprising nearly a quarter of all the planet’s wooded lands. They are heavily concentrated in the five megaforests.
John W. Reid (Ever Green: Saving Big Forests to Save the Planet)
Scheffe tests also produce “homogeneous subsets,” that is, groups that have statistically identical means. Both the three largest and the three smallest populations have identical means. The Tukey levels of statistical significance are, respectively, .725 and .165 (both > .05). This is shown in Table 13.3. Figure 13.2 Group Boxplots Table 13.2 ANOVA Table Third, is the increase in means linear? This test is an option on many statistical software packages that produces an additional line of output in the ANOVA table, called the “linear term for unweighted sum of squares,” with the appropriate F-test. Here, that F-test statistic is 7.85, p = .006 < .01, and so we conclude that the apparent linear increase is indeed significant: wetland loss is linearly associated with the increased surrounding population of watersheds.8 Figure 13.2 does not clearly show this, but the enlarged Y-axis in Figure 13.3 does. Fourth, are our findings robust? One concern is that the statistical validity is affected by observations that statistically (although not substantively) are outliers. Removing the seven outliers identified earlier does not affect our conclusions. The resulting variable remains normally distributed, and there are no (new) outliers for any group. The resulting variable has equal variances across the groups (Levene’s test = 1.03, p = .38 > .05). The global F-test is 3.44 (p = .019 < .05), and the Bonferroni post-hoc test similarly finds that only the differences between the “Small” and “Large” group means are significant (p = .031). The increase remains linear (F = 6.74, p = .011 < .05). Thus, we conclude that the presence of observations with large values does not alter our conclusions. Table 13.3 Homogeneous Subsets Figure 13.3 Watershed Loss, by Population We also test the robustness of conclusions for different variable transformations. The extreme skewness of the untransformed variable allows for only a limited range of root transformations that produce normality. Within this range (power 0.222 through 0.275), the preceding conclusions are replicated fully. Natural log and base-10 log transformations also result in normality and replicate these results, except that the post-hoc tests fail to identify that the means of the “Large” and “Small” groups are significantly different. However, the global F-test is (marginally) significant (F = 2.80, p = .043 < .05), which suggests that this difference is too small to detect with this transformation. A single, independent-samples t-test for this difference is significant (t = 2.47, p = .017 < .05), suggesting that this problem may have been exacerbated by the limited number of observations. In sum, we find converging evidence for our conclusions. As this example also shows, when using statistics, analysts frequently must exercise judgment and justify their decisions.9 Finally, what is the practical significance of this analysis? The wetland loss among watersheds with large surrounding populations is [(3.21 – 2.52)/2.52 =] 27.4 percent greater than among those surrounded by small populations. It is up to managers and elected officials to determine whether a difference of this magnitude warrants intervention in watersheds with large surrounding populations.10
Evan M. Berman (Essential Statistics for Public Managers and Policy Analysts)
For human beings to destroy the biological diversity of God's creation; for human beings to degrade the integrity of the earth by causing changes in its climate, by stripping the earth of its natural forests or destroying its wetlands; for human beings to contaminate the earth's waters, its land, its air, and its life -- these are sins.
Patriarch Bartholomew
Between 1992 and 2010, Harris County (of which Houston is a part) lost 30 percent of its wetlands to urban development. Had these natural sponges not been paved over, the “Bayou City” would have fared better during Harvey.
Elizabeth Rush (Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore)
Every acre of agricultural land I had ever seen—every cow or sheep pasture, every wheat or soybean or vegetable field—was once forest, wetland, prairie: another kind of land. Regardless of whether the farming was done well or poorly, its initial establishment in all those places had required conquest, eviction of the creatures that lived there before, and conversion of the land to a new use. And maintaining it required constant defense against nature’s efforts at reclamation.
Tovar Cerulli (The Mindful Carnivore)
By virtue of their very nature, wetlands once again challenged traditional concepts of property. Because the "wet" part of wetlands offered public benefits, the government had become involved to protect common values. Yet the "land" part had traditionally accorded owners the rights to do what they wanted. Sooner or later Americans would have to address the apparent conflict between safeguarding environmental quality for society at large and preserving landowners' rights. The wetlands were part land and part water, part private and part public. The future of this enigmatic physical and cultural landscape lay in the delicately shifting balance of public opinion and in the stark exposure of raw political power.
Ann Vileisis (Discovering the Unknown Landscape: A History Of America's Wetlands)