Tales from the Wild Wood – BBC FOUR

17/10/2012

in Art, Woodland Culture

Starts TONIGHT at 8:30pm!

BBC Four, 8.30pm     6 x 30mins

Tales from the Wild Wood is a new six-part series about British woodlands to be broadcast on BBC4 this autumn. Presented by writer and wannabe woodsman Rob Penn, the series explores the great British love affair with trees.

Rob Penn

A year ago, Rob took over the management of Strawberry Cottage Wood, 50 acres of abandoned broadleaf woodland at the entrance to the Llanthony Valley, in the beautiful Black Mountains, south east Wales. Through managing the wood, the series explores the issues affecting British woodlands today: is man good for woods? Can woodlands pay? How do we value them in non-economic ways? Will our woods survive in the future?

Each episode looks at the day to day management of a woodland – keeping pigs, trapping squirrels, coppicing, horse logging, the economics of our native timber industry, planting trees, future proofing woods, making and selling charcoal, improving biodiversity and encouraging public access. Using fascinating archive, the series also examines our historical relationship with woodlands, recalling the time when the woods employed thousands of people and provided the backbone of rural industries, industries that sustained the countryside over centuries.

Kate Morgan and Rob Penn

Rob was an amateur when he took over Strawberry Cottage Wood. To help him, he called upon a delightful army of expert woodsmen and eccentric foresters – Wyndham Morgan helped Rob make the wood safe, Iliff Simey explained the virtues of ‘natural forest practice’, Pablo Sanchez helped fell the big ash trees, Kate Morgan brought an 850-kilo Ardennes horse in to extract timber and Pooran Desai OBE advised on the nuances of making British charcoal.

Making charcoal

To understand some of the issues affecting our woodlands, Rob periodically left Strawberry Cottage Wood and journeyed round Britain, to Westonbirt to see a successful coppice restoration project, to Carmarthenshire to scrutinize a new type of wood fuel, to Whitney Sawmill and even to a cricket stadium, to see ash stumps from his wood used in an international match.

The British people have an innate affinity with trees: they touch us deeply in ways we don’t completely understand. Our woodlands are the least valued, sustainable resource we have left.

Tales from the Wild Wood is a gentle call to arms – to manage more of our woods, and manage them better. Above all, it is a celebration of a fundamental and very beautiful part of the British landscape.

Tales from the Wild Wood is directed and produced by Will Lorimer for Indus Films (The Fisherman’s Apprentice with Monty Halls, Arctic with Bruce Parry, Amazon).

 

Indus Films, 17 Cathedral Road, Cardiff, CF11 9HA, 02920 399555 www.indusfilms.com

Share and Enjoy:
  • Print
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Facebook
  • Yahoo! Buzz
  • Twitter
  • Google Bookmarks

{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

wildelycreative October 17, 2012 at 19:25

I want to be Rob Penn now! Looks like an awesome series.

Reply

Jan Wyllie October 17, 2012 at 22:57

Great to know others are entering the game. Working with small private woodlands is rewarding in so many ways. It keeps you fit and provides a purpose which spans many human lifetimes. The name of the game is “survivance” which is not about surviving now, but about what we leave behind. Join us @worldwidewood on Twitter and read the ongoing story from Origins until now on http://www.worldwidewood.wordpress.com.

Reply

Imogen Radford October 18, 2012 at 18:57
Imogen Radford October 18, 2012 at 18:58

Ah, that’s because it was yesterday!

Reply

Mark Fisher October 19, 2012 at 08:52

The incorrigible human being, who has to exploit everything for product. Can not some woodland be a space of non-extractive purpose? A few years ago, I wrote an article about the pleasures of walking in my local, ancient (non-managed) publicly woodland, and invited people to come walk them with me. Four families took up the offer, and Iliff Simey turned up from Wales and stayed the WE – he appears to be involved with one of the programs in the series. Iliff lives on the margins of society – no bad thing – but he looked at every tree for what it could provide for him, whereas I was pointing out the roe deer, what sense of wildness they bring, and that the woodland was theirs, not ours.

We saw two roe deer yesterday, while walking through Broadstone Wood in Shipley Glen, about a mile from our back door. Its an oak/wych elm/ash ancient wood in a gorge valley of sandstone that has very large rock outcrops, and Loadpit Beck runs thrilling down through it over cascades in places – recent rain made it exciting! Roe deer are uncommon there – the upper reaches of the wood can be busy, but they have a presence in ones and twos in all the ancient wood around me. We also see kingfisher, dipper and heron on Loadpit Beck, and there are small brown trout. Kestrels feed on the wood pigeon. The ground flora includes tutsan, bistort, golden saxifrage, wood sorrel, woodrush, woodruff, cow wheat etc. These close to urban woodlands, always at peril from unsocial activity, have more real wildlife value than any of the farmed landscapes of the conservation industry, and their magical value would be trashed by the management indicated in these programs.

Reply

Linda A. Dolata October 25, 2012 at 06:44

In brief answwer to Mark Fisher.
.If woodlands are left unmanaged, then the canopy will close in time, and the Ancient iWoodland Indicator plants and others that he lists will gradually dwindle and disappear from lack of light. This is happening to lapsed coppice all over Britain.It is the very act of coppicing that maintains the ground flora(bykickstarting the seed bank in the soil), and related food web.The pigs rooting around help to remove competitors such as the brambles So Rob Penn is actually restoring the woodland. It may appear a bit brutal at the moment, but the results will be evidence enough.
(Linda-Kew volunteer guide and wood warden)

Reply

Mark Fisher November 7, 2012 at 13:05

Linda – you are wrong! Perhaps you should walk some of the non-intervention woodlands of Eastern Europe, or the wilderness woodlands of N. America, rather than swallow the propaganda of the conservation industry here.

Reply

Linda A. Dolata October 25, 2012 at 06:30

Fantastic programme as far as I am concerned…I own a small piece of Ancient Woodland in Kent (mainly coppiced hornbeam(lapsed) with oak standards) which we are managing as a nature reserve- soon recoppicing on a small scale to increase biodiversity.
I also thoroughly recommend www. swog.org.uk the Small Woodland Owners Group-free to access- to anyone with an interest in our woodland. Plus if you have never been to Bentley Wood Fair in Sussex, it is a must for next Autumn

Reply

Linda A. Dolata October 25, 2012 at 06:46

re last comment- sorry by ‘our’ woodland, I mean our as in indigenous/native/British

Reply

Jan Wyllie October 27, 2012 at 21:19

We work hard for ‘all our relations’, not just for the benefit of humans.
HOLLY-DAYS – The worse job in the wood http://worldwidewood.wordpress.com/2012/10/27/holly-days-the-worse-job-in-the-wood/

Reply

Ian M November 4, 2012 at 13:28

Hello Linda,

See this 1995 piece by Clive Hambler & Martin Speight for a challenging perspective on the usual claims about coppicing and other ‘traditional’ management strategies. They point to the fact that ‘some 70% of the energy flow through a terrestrial ecosystem is through the decomposer community’, many of whom cannot tolerate the excess light and regular soil disturbance that the ‘glorified scrub’ of coppicing brings about. The human attention is easily caught by flowering plants and butterflies, most of whom have the option to make a home outside, or on the edges of woodland. Meanwhile, of the 150 species of invertebrates counted in British woodlands ‘[o]nly three species (0.5%) are specifically threatened due to lack of the commonest traditional woodland management – coppicing’, while ‘65% are threatened by removal of dead wood or old trees’ and it’s estimated that ‘one insect species [becomes] extinct in Britain nearly every year’. From this viewpoint, woods and other landscapes that have been ‘neglected’ by civilised humans – in other words returned to ‘management’ primarily by all the other plant and animal species who depend on them – can have greater conservation value than those re-incorporated into the extractive human economy (though FWIW I believe there are other forms of human economy that can co-exist with these communities in a relatively peaceful, mutually supportive manner). Hambler and Speight conclude:

[…] we should recognise that the simple traditional practices of Europeans abused habitats for millennia (Hambler 1990), and were certainly not designed to protect biodiversity. Traditional management developed solely to exploit wildlife, and has narrowly failed to exterminate many of our native species (Box 3). If we continue with tradition some relatively tolerant species will survive; if we replace old methods with management designed to protect wildlife, then we have a better chance of helping our biodiversity into the hands of our grandchildren – and an opportunity to enhance it.

Watching ‘Tales From The Wild Wood’ with all this in mind many of the attitudes expressed by Rob Penn and others involved come to seem frankly deranged. This was apparent from the BBC’s first introduction, with extremely loaded questions like ‘can they [‘our woods’] survive in the 21st century?’ and ‘can he bring this forgotten forest back to life?’ when the woods in question were quite clearly surviving and thriving (in their own way) before Penn waded in to the ‘jungle’ with his chainsaw and his imposed, heavy-handed attempts to ‘bring the wood back to good health’. Apparently, for the BBC at least, health, survival and life itself (!) are dependent upon domestication into the human sphere and/or enslavement to the demands of global capitalism. As George Monbiot’s sarcastic friend put it: ‘How did Nature cope before we came along?’ ;-)

best,
Ian

Reply

Linda A. Dolata November 4, 2012 at 17:10

hi Ian – I believe i have to contradict my previous messgae and agree with you about the dead wood fauna/ fungi. Thank you for the clear information.
all the best
Linda

Reply

Ian M November 4, 2012 at 21:35

Glad it was well received, Linda. Always difficult to question received wisdoms. Good look with the woodland. I’m sure there must be some form of management that is compatible with broader conservation aims. The take-home message for me from the Hambler/Speight article was the importance of ‘neglect’ for some large areas to remain as undisturbed as possible; to have at least some ‘set-aside’ free from interference. Shouldn’t be too hard to arrange, no?

Reply

Linda A. Dolata November 5, 2012 at 08:20

Thanks Ian- in fact although small (2.4 acres), our little wood has a good range of ecosystems as it has a stream on one side and a medieval? dith and bank on the other. there is a lot of dead wood both on the ground and standing which we intend to leave in situ (as long as the upright stuff doesn’t feel as if it will clobber a dog walker). Any coppicing will be minimal- really just to take out a pole if it looks as if it is going to split an ancient stool- and done with hand tools (and the accasional hire for one day chainsaw), over a span of 25 years.
So i think that we are really in agreement
All the best
Linda

Reply

Ian M November 9, 2012 at 13:01

I should clarify that by ‘large areas’ of neglect I meant nationally rather than on each individual site. It turns out the most threatened late-successional species require big blocks of damp, dark woodland that lies undisturbed for a long time. So high diversity of habitat within each individual site is not necessarily the best thing for conservation of these species. CH & MS explain (see above link):

It is undesirable to aim obsessively for diversity. Some species or habitats can be exotic or damaging, yet add to diversity. Take the Flow Country, an extensive and relatively homogeneous habitat of international importance, and plant some exotic conifer woods: the total species and habitat diversity of the area increases, but the populations of vulnerable species decline. Some types of habitat diversity, such as that created by paths or coppicing, should be near the edge of a woodland, to protect the processes of its core.

I don’t know what this implies for the management of your woodland, Linda (I’m not an expert, but your plans sound light-handed and sensitive in a good way). Nationally I guess this lends weight to the call to at least restrict extractive economic activity in the National Nature Reserves – a case Mr Fisher has been making eloquently for many years (for example).

Incidentally, I saw an example on BBC4 the other day of what I was talking about with those ‘other forms of human economy that can co-exist with [forest] communities in a relatively peaceful, mutually supportive manner’ which may be of interest – currently available on iplayer: ‘Unnatural Histories – 3. Amazon‘. It explores recent evidence supporting the theory of mass indigenous human habitation of the Amazon, observed by early European explorers/conquerors, and looks at the lasting effects these people had on the vegetation and wider ecosystems. Especially in the case of the dark earth ‘terra praeta’ practice, whereby the soil was enriched by the burial of vast quantities of broken pottery, this appears to have had a beneficial impact on the totality of life in those areas. Current estimates put the ‘total area of anthropogenic forest’ at ‘almost twice the size of Spain’ [53:08]. I wonder if these people had a policy towards the rest of the forest, requiring their impacts to be minimal therein for the good of species adversely affected by their management practices. But I realise you could ask the same question of every other species making its home there and shaping the ecology around it to suit its needs, which rapidly turns the question to nonsense. How about ants? Tree frogs? Lichens? What’s the total area of ant-ogenic forest in the Amazon? Do they consciously limit their management practices? ;-p

I’ll be quiet now.
I

Reply

Doddyman November 17, 2012 at 02:16

Rob Penn is doing a great job. There is nothing at all wrong with working with our environment in a sustainable way. He’s not advocating industrial plantation management and mindless exploitation of the land. Well managed woodland is a joy and ‘almost any British woodland that you come across will, at the very least, have been heavily influenced by man and its current appearance will be a direct result of centuries of management’ (Paul Sterry – Complete Guide to Trees) There is very, very little of our woodland that hasn’t been managed at some time in the past or specifically planted. – Also, please remeber that trees are the climax plant species. If entirely left to themselves it is entirely concievable they would eventually dominate all areas in which they can grow and their canopy could one day eradicate far more species. I am in no way saying that will happen any time in the next few thousand years but rather using it as an indicator of the fact that working with the enviroment and sympathetically managing it can be the route of the wise. Especially if human needs can be satiated sustainably in the process. I belive Rob gave air time to someone who turns over dead wood to decomposition species.
Anyway, I belive that Tales from the Wild Woods is a good progam with praisworthy aims.

Reply

Ian M November 19, 2012 at 23:49

Hi Doddyman, thought-provoking comments – thanks! Some responses, with apologies for hogging the discussion:

‘There is nothing at all wrong with working with our environment in a sustainable way.’ – Agreed, but this use of the word ‘sustainable’ bothers me. Can you call a management practice sustainable if it contributes to the loss of, on average, one insect/invertebrate species every year? ‘Well managed woodland’ might bring joy to people and a select group of plants and animals but it can bring ruin to other organisms with differing ideas about what constitutes the ideal habitat. Maybe coppicing can be sustained indefinitely, but at what cost, and is it worth it? Rather than choosing a strategy that can merely survive blunt repetition through predetermined cycles I would prefer to seek out ways of enhancing the naturally occurring qualities to the benefit of all in that particular community. Moving from DEgenerative to REgenerative engagement with the land rather than simply settling for the mid-point on the continuum (see Toby Hemenway’s discussion – “How’s your marriage?” “Oh, it’s sustainable” :p )

‘He’s not advocating industrial plantation management and mindless exploitation of the land.’ – I don’t know… his comment in episode 1 when viewing the neglected wood for the first time: ‘You need a chainsaw in here’ [5:45] seemed pretty mindless to me. He showed no interest in exploring the wood for any intrinsic value it had in itself, totally missing the crucial first step of Observation. Even the token ecologist he brought along clearly came with a head chock-full of preconceived notions of value and the Necessary Steps needed to achieve this grand vision. Like a gardener immediately reaching for a spade to dig out the ‘weeds’ in an abandoned plot the program spent approximately no time looking at what was actually there and appreciating it for its own merit.

On the question of exploitation I take a somewhat deeper view. Sure, coppicing isn’t nearly in the same league as modern industrial forestry in terms of drawdown and environmental degradation (‘I know of no nation and no people that have maintained, on a sustainable basis, plantation-managed trees beyond three rotations’ – Chris Maser), but even in the examples Penn cites coppicing hasn’t been used to satiate human needs (as you put it) so much as it has supplied the demands of industry and empire. Is charcoal a fundamental human need??

Deeper still, I’m not aware of any evidence of coppicing in the British Isles before the Neolithic (farming) Revolution some 6,000 years ago. The first evidence comes from a prehistoric road buried in peat with uniform lengths of ash and hazel. I imagine that the paleo/mesolithic hunter-gatherers who preceded the farmers had very different uses for wood. For one thing their basic means of subsistence didn’t require them to fell vast amounts of trees in order to create fields for annual crops, pasture and hay meadows. I don’t think full-time farmers qualify as ‘woodland people’ in anything like the same way as the first indigenous inhabitants, who would have been firmly embedded in the ecological fabric of the original Wildwood – a forest species in their own right. Pitting yourself against that spontaneous ecology puts an end to those intimate relationships and marks the beginning of ‘mindless exploitation’, in my view. Which brings me on to…

‘trees are the climax plant species. If entirely left to themselves it is entirely concievable they would eventually dominate all areas in which they can grow’ – the farmer’s nightmare scenario! Remarkably tenacious, this view that late-succession habitat is inferior to the earlier, artificially maintained stages. I think it’s a cultural prejudice.

Anyway, in spite all of the above I’m still enjoying watching the series! Penn doesn’t seem like a bad guy and he is trying some interesting things. I worry about the future of woodlands over here, but ultimately I think we have to find a way back into relationship with them rather than having an entirely ‘hands off’ approach. That’s not likely to be a smooth process!

cheers,
Ian

Reply

Doddyman November 20, 2012 at 19:18

Thank you for your response Ian.
For me the management approach seems to make sense. We have to live with the natural world and our existence is dependent on making careful use of the natural resources around us in a way that can be continued. The old woodsman methods achieved that and created an environment for a vast array of species.
You cannot Judge Rob Penn on a throw away comment. He was fighting his way through the undergrowth was commenting on how hard that was not making a mission statement. He has made it very clear in his very approach that he doesn’t advocate industrial plantation management.
Charcoal does help to meet a fundamental human need. Mining for coal is highly dangerous and exploitative. Charcoal is sustainable and makes far more efficient use of the woodlands natural resources than simply burning wood and transports far easier too.
6000 years? How far back do you want to go?
You said ‘this view that late-succession habitat is inferior to the earlier, artificially maintained stages’ … I didn’t mean to imply that at all. I’m interested that you think it culturally prejudicial. If this hypothetical situation were allowed to come about there would not be much diversity at all! I thought you were worried about species dying out. Surely to say that you would prefer to let that happen is culturally prejudiced yourself, against the earlier stages?
‘ultimately I think we have to find a way back into relationship with them rather than having an entirely ‘hands off’ approach. That’s not likely to be a smooth process!’ – I totally agree with you.
It’s hard to convey a sense of the tone I’m taking when I make these comments. I don’t intend to attack your comments but simply to counter comments I don’t necessarily agree with.
Many thanks.

Reply

Ian M November 24, 2012 at 19:23

No probs, Doddyman – thanks for your reply. I agree with you on the tone problem and apologise if my comments sound a little shirty (I play fast and loose with italics, quotes and links, I know).

For me the management approach seems to make sense. We have to live with the natural world and our existence is dependent on making careful use of the natural resources around us in a way that can be continued.

Yes, I would go along with this, albeit questioning the achievements of the ‘old woodsman': while his management practices have showed staying power over a few centuries (a geological eyeblink, btw) and perhaps could continue indefinitely, they succeed at the expense of many native wildlife species, IF provision is not made for these in areas which he leaves untouched. We saw the common attitude towards grey squirrels in the program, and the subsequent policy of extermination. I’ve heard similar sentiments expressed about deer and rabbits who come and nibble on the new suckers after trees have been coppiced, hence the use of fencing and other techniques such as pollarding or covering the stumps with brash. How would these woodland managers react towards the native large mammals driven extinct by their forebears – wild boar, aurochs, bear, wolf, beaver?? Can you imagine the damage these would wreak on the best of carefully laid human plans? I think they would declare war on them after about five minutes.

re: Penn’s throwaway comment – fair enough, I guess. I just saw it as indicative of his wider approach. He did bring in a chainsaw in pretty short order… Also, ‘he doesn’t advocate industrial plantation management’ – no, but my point is that coppicing too serves industrial purposes. It can & does provide for the ‘fundamental human need’ of heating, mainly through firewood as you note, but charcoal evolved primarily to serve the needs of industry from the early blacksmith to the blast furnace (it burns hotter allowing iron to be smelted). I don’t believe industry is a ‘fundamental human need’. Interestingly Wikipedia notes that:

The massive production of charcoal (at its height employing hundreds of thousands, mainly in Alpine and neighbouring forests) was a major cause of deforestation, especially in Central Europe. In England, many woods were managed as coppices, which were cut and regrew cyclically, so that a steady supply of charcoal would be available (in principle) forever; complaints (as early as the Stuart period) about shortages may relate to the results of temporary over-exploitation or the impossibility of increasing production to match growing demand [my emphasis]. The increasing scarcity of easily harvested wood was a major factor for the switch to the fossil fuel equivalents, mainly coal and brown coal for industrial use.

So maybe charcoal production from coppice woodland was sustainable, but the ever-increasing demand from a society based on exponential economic growth meant that it could never supply enough.

re: cultural prejudice – I’m glad you don’t think late-successional habitat is inferior. Do you see how/why a culture with full-scale agriculture as its subsistence base might come to view it that way? In Britain unfortunately you have to go back 6,000 years before you find a majority indigenous population that didn’t see the Wildwood as an obstacle to food procurement (it was their source of food, along with the wetlands and waterways), needing to be felled to make way for farmland or at least sufficiently tamed on the village outskirts. Oliver Rackham estimated that ‘half of England had ceased to be wildwood by the early Iron Age (500BC)’ (The Illustrated History of the Countryside, p.35) – the iron being used for better ploughs and axes to further speed up the destruction.

You write: ‘If this hypothetical situation were allowed to come about there would not be much diversity at all!’ – do you have any evidence to support this? It seems to contradict the first lesson of ecology, namely that life tends spontaneously towards greater diversity and a wide spread of species. It’s simply false that the pre-human forests were composed of only a bland selection of a few species. They would have collapsed and died at the first hint of climate change if that were the case. Perhaps new woods springing up in Britain would be in a comparatively poor position because they would be missing the ‘vital organs’ (as someone once put it to me) of the extinct mammals and their patterns of behaviour. But these roles would be filled in short order, I think – by migrants, feral creatures, even new species in the long term (see Australia, for example, where a marsupial provided the common ancestor for a myriad of different creatures filling similar niches to those found in the other continents) – quite probably there would be a role for humans to take up in that scenario, too. But I think what has to end is this ‘shock and awe’ tactic of constantly fighting to reset ecological succession back to the lowest levels. That eventually leads to soil death and desertification, as the spread of agriculture across the globe clearly illustrates. I think a human future will have to be based on some form of alliance with the process of succession (see: ‘Agriculture or Permaculture: Why Words Matter‘). If this is a prejudiced view, then I’m happy to admit it: I am biased in favour of biologically rich, old-growth ecologies that have the greatest chance of ensuring the continuation of life on this damaged planet!

cheers,
Ian

Reply

Doddyman November 17, 2012 at 02:19

Hmmm. Should proof read really. I do know how to spell ‘believe’ and would not normally have used the expression twice so close together… plank!

Reply

Mick Mack December 8, 2012 at 21:07

There are those who have, for a very long time, berated the human species for seeking to manage and control the natural environment for their own devices and have then advocated for an approach that seeks to manage and control the natural environment for their own devices, only this time it happens to be for some mythical sense of an ideal point in evolutionary ecology that existed that we need to maintain, whereby we can enter into it only with certain restrictions imposed by a cognoscenti and then retreat from it to go about our daily business whilst those in the know ensure that this state of affairs is maintained for the future survival of this optimal state that must exclude the presence of humans as we are the one organism that will prove the death knell of all natural habitat.

We are living an existence that is very abusive of the natural environment that we are reliant for our existence on. I am advocating a need to have a far more intimate physical/emotional relationship with these different environments otherwise we will never appreciate their worth and how to cultivate a more profound understanding and empirical knowledge of the interconnectedness of ecological webs and how we might re-integrate with them as a species. The ongoing alienation of the human species both from the rest of nature and indeed each other is as a result of this move away from our relationship with eco-systems. We are not tribespeople of the Amazon, Africa or Borneo, I am not suggesting that we don loin cloths and live in caves, but unless we return to a land-based existence and use the understanding we now have, both scientific and folkloric combined, and can continue to develop, simply allowing habitats to self-manage and humans to continue to live in cities I do not believe will work for much longer.

I appreciate the approach of the permaculture community with the zoning of human habitats and the vast majority of other organisms living ‘apart’ for the most part, in a ‘wilderness’. In order to live this close to natural processes requires a very radical departure from the dominant paradigm of human habitat, and whilst there can be much adaptation, nevertheless, access to the land in a controlled way is the only way we can re-evaluate and re-negotiate the relationship with the rest of the biosphere. Access to the land on the kind of scale and in the way that it needs to happen will not happen under the current dominant economic model. Bill Mollison himslef said “everything gardens”, and indeed long before humans where abroad on the face of the earth other organisms where ‘managing’ forest habitats; that is, they were part of the evolutionary ecology that exists at all times and all parts of the planet earth. There is no perfect way of living with any habitat, we can try different approaches over time using principles we’ve developed to philosophically underpin our understanding of the rest of the evolutionary dynamic.
Scaling up the kind of livelihood that the Ben Laws’ of this world are promulgating takes planning and in order to plan in that way on the scale that the situation requires can only happen under a totally different political and economic regime. Those individuals and institutions currently sitting on tens of thousands of hectares of cultivable land that they cannot possibly need to meet their own immediate fundamental requirements will have to go. No matter which regime one chooses for re-establishing the relationship with the natural environment to meet the needs of the human species it won’t happen until the issue of access to the land to carry out whatever that regime might be is resolved.

Conservation of species, including ourselves, is only possible as a part of an acceptance of ourselves as part of the integrated dynamic of organisms and not as an alienated observer of that process only.

Reply

Leave a Comment

{ 1 trackback }

Previous post:

Next post: