Not Just Another Statement About Climate Change

The following, beautifully written piece is sourced from, a site working towards global environmental sustainability (Something the world desperately needs).

Water Rhapsody, save the planetEARTH MEANDERS
Earth Is Dying, Yet Climate and Forest Movements Lack Urgency and Substance

Human industrial growth is systematically liquidating the natural ecosystems
that are the habitat for humans and for all life. Earth is dying, one logged
old-growth tree and tank of gasoline at a time, yet most environmental
groups are shilling solutions that are inadequate and ill-conceived – such
as logging old-growth forests to protect them. Nothing shows this better
than Greenpeace and the Rainforest Action Network – in an age of mass
extinction, abrupt climate change, and ecosystem collapse – wanting us to
wipe our asses with toilet paper from “certified” old-growth forest pulp.

A profound lack of understanding exists, even amid the supposedly radical
environmental movement, of the seriousness of merging ecological crises. If
Gaia – the Earth System or biosphere – is alive, as science has come to
understand, then clearly she can die as key ecosystems are destroyed and
biogeochemical processes fail. To survive, much less thrive, humanity must
stop scraping Earth’s land of life, spewing waste into our air and water,
and claiming it can all be certified as sustainably done, while calling it

Industrial growth’s destruction of ecosystems is undermining the
habitability of the planet, threatening the maintenance of conditions
necessary for life, by destroying the ecosystems required for a living
planet. As key ecosystems are lost, indications are humanity will soon be
going extinct, quite possibly taking the biosphere and all life with us.

Life begets life. It is a miracle of nature that life, together in
ecosystems, creates conditions necessary for life. Yet multidimensional
ecological crises – climate, forests, water, food, overpopulation and
inequitable consumption, and others – are undermining life. A time of great
dying looms as humans are destroying their habitat, all life, and the Earth

Together either we end fracking, tar sands, coal, old-growth logging,
overpopulation, and inequitable overconsumption all at once or our one
shared biosphere collapses. Not only do we need to protest, but we need the
right solutions. These must be derived from the best ecological minds in
broad consultation, not by hipster, non-ecologists who have tapped into
celebrity and foundation money.

Protection of old-growth forests is a vital climate solution being given
short thrift by the self-appointed, often underqualified environmental
movement elite. Rainforest Action Network and Greenpeace USA’s obstinate
support for Forest Stewardship Council’s (FSC) massive old-growth logging –
across an area twice the size of Texas – for throwaway consumer products is
a major obstacle to going forward on climate. I have written at length,
including at, how virtually every major NGO
greenwashes old-growth forest logging in what I have termed the “Great
Rainforest Heist.”

In 2009 Lindsey Allen (now Rainforest Action Network’s new acting director,
then with Greenpeace Canada) claimed victory and ended a campaign against
Kleenex because they agreed to have their old-growth boreal forest clearcuts
for toilet paper certified by FSC as being sustainable. Ms. Allen has gone
on to greenwash old-growth Gucci shopping bags and Disney books with RAN.
Before her, Michael Brune, now chief accountant for Sierra Club, did

Greenpeace and RAN want us to wipe our asses with old-growth forests.
Old-growth forest logging and its terrible impacts upon species, climate,
and the biosphere will never end as long they – as members of FSC – falsely
certify it as sustainable.

I recently presented a scientific paper in Kerala, India, now being prepared
for publication, which seeks to quantify how many terrestrial ecosystems –
including old-growth forests – can be lost without biosphere collapse. This
is an attempt to set an easily understood threshold for old-growth forest
loss, like the 350ppm limit on carbon to avoid abrupt climate change.

Based upon an amazing landscape metric called “percolation,” I hypothesize
that a loss of more than 40 percent of terrestrial ecosystems long-term –
including old-growth forests – collapses the biosphere. This is the point
where critical deterioration in ecosystem connectivity occurs across scale,
from landscapes to bioregions and continents, and on to the biosphere.
Instead of humanity existing within a context of nature, ecosystems become
fragmented, disconnected, and surrounded by humanity.

We are now at 50 percent natural ecosystem loss globally. I conclude that
Earth needs to maintain some two-thirds of its land area as natural and
seminatural ecosystems to meet local needs and to maintain local and global
ecological sustainability. Along with a number of other planetary
boundaries, including climate change and biodiversity loss, Earth is already
in ecological overshoot and will collapse unless we pull back from the

It is clear that global ecological sustainability and universal well-being
depend critically upon protecting old-growth forests and ending fossil fuel
emissions. Large, intact, and connected standing old-growth forests are
required for local prosperity and ecosystem service continuity – and for an
enduring, naturally evolving, global biosphere.

It is still possible to avoid abrupt climate change and global ecosystem
collapse – but only if we both dramatically cut fossil fuel emissions AND
protect and restore natural ecosystems immediately. Based upon ecological
science, an end to their industrial destruction is vital to limiting climate

It is time for the climate movement, led by, to call for protection
of all old-growth forests. And for Greenpeace, RAN and other NGOs supporting
their logging to re-examine their position and resign from FSC.

Ending poverty doesn’t justify endless ecocidal growth for all, at the
ever-advancing cost of liquidating old-growth ecosystems and fouling our
atmosphere, an impossible path on a finite planet. Rather the focus for
ecologically and socially sustainable development should be meeting basic
needs with some of life’s luxuries for all, with a reasonable bit more for
those who work hard and are gifted.

Earth’s people want universal democracy, freedom, economic justice, and
sustained ecology for everyone, for the whole world, and they want it now.
And governments and corrupt NGOs had better get out of the way.

Your biosphere, old-growth forests, human family, and kindred species need
you. Go to them now.

By Dr. Glen Barry, Ecological Internet, Earth Meanders come from Earth’s
February 24, 2013