Linking to a new study at Oregon State which tends to reinforce the ecological importance of wolves to the Yellowstone ecosystem and elsewhere. With the wolves helping to reduce the large population of elk in the park, who over the years overgrazed plants, trees and shrubs, many of the berry producing shrubs have returned. These berries are important for the grizzly bear’s pre-hibernation diet. Continue reading
Growing up in an Evangelical Christian home, my disappointment in how my form of Christianity thought about and responded to environmental problems was inescapable. Biblical dominance over nature took precedence over reverence and respect. But there was one prominent voice within the evangelical movement who strongly disagreed. In 1970, Dr. Francis Schaeffer, an evangelical theologian and philosopher, penned the book, “Pollution and the Death of Man: the Christian view of ecology,” which is still available in reprinted version. It’s a short read, little more than a hundred pages and a couple of hours of reading. The other night I blew the dust off my original, dog-eared, margin-smudged version that I kept near my night-stand during my youth as I struggled with faith and fauna. Its content and message of why Christian stewardship of the environment matters are still very relevant today. Schaeffer wrote the book during a time of environmental awakening in the U.S., shortly after Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring but before the advent of federal environmental laws, such as the Clean Air and Water Acts. Continue reading
Author and ecologist, Daniel Botkin, in his new book, The Moon in the Nautilus Shell, offers an important perspective on humanity’s connectedness to nature. Using the fascinating ecology of the Nautilus, Botkin argues that we too are deeply connected to nature in ways beyond our own conciousness. When we lose touch with our surroundings, nature becomes but a mere abstraction bereft of relevance and meaning. According to Botkin, the only way to solve many of our environmental problems is through our understanding of our connection to nature, an important part of ourselves. Here is a four-minute video of the unique story of the Nautilus and Botkin’s sentiments.