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Gleanings from Headline News – September 2021

Generations Working Together to Solve Climate Crisis

A new study provides a nuanced – and ultimately hopeful – view of the climate generation gap. Older cohorts started out less concerned (circa 2009), but worry has increased across all age groups at a similar rate over the last decade. Climate concern is increasing among all age groups, raising hopes that different generations can work together to solve the climate crisis, the authors of a new study say. Read more at Anthropocene Magazine.

Insect Apocalypse

Insects have declined by 75% in the past 50 years – and the consequences may soon be catastrophic. Biologist Dave Goulson reveals the vital services they perform. Few people seem to realize how devastating this decline will be, and not only for human wellbeing. We need insects to pollinate our crops, recycle dung, leaves and corpses, keep the soil healthy, control pests, and much more. Read more at The Guardian.

The World’s Climate is in Our Hands/El Clima Mundial Está en Nuestras Manos

In 30 years, history books will mention August 9, 2021, as a crucial date in the fight against the climate crisis. That day, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a landmark science report that dispelled once and for all any doubt or speculation about the severity or the origin of the existential crisis we all confront. Read more at The Sierra Club.

Rich Desert River Struggles to Keep Flowing

The Gila was once a vibrant desert river, providing a lifeline for the riparian habitat and wildlife that depended on it in the U.S. Southwest. But population growth, agricultural withdrawals, and, increasingly, climate change have badly diminished the river and threaten its future. Read more at Yale Environment 360.

Las Vegas Gets Aggressive Grass Removal Policy

The story of how Las Vegas became a leader in water conservation is driven, in part, by necessity. Not only is Nevada the driest state in the nation, but it also has a legal right to the smallest share of the Colorado River, a lifeline for much of the Southwest that supports about 40 million people. Read more at The Sierra Club.

Is Your Garden Ecologically Sound?

Some gardeners react to any mention of ecological landscaping – the merging of environmental science and art – as if it were a compromise or concession meant to limit their creativity. Darrel Morrison begs to differ. Mr. Morrison, the elder statesman of the ecological landscaping movement, offers some advice for gardening in a changing world. Read more at The New York Times.

Do U.S. Food Systems Leave Behind People of Color?

Narragansett Indian Tribe member Summer Gonsalves knows the ins and outs of the U.S. food system, and she knows exactly who it leaves behind. She says the system has purposefully and unfailingly disconnected people of color from nutritious and affordable foods. Read more at EcoRI News.

Update on Mysterious Bird Deaths

This summer, sick and dying birds were documented in several states in the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest, and South. The main symptom was swollen, crusted-over eyes in fledglings of blue jays, robins, grackles, and several other species. There’s some good news. According to the latest update from the Cornell Wildlife Health Lab, it seems this bird mortality event is beginning to subside without significant impact to bird populations overall. Read more at The National Wildlife Federation.

Electric Lawn Care Sweeping the Nation

Can it be true there’s a bipartisan movement and it’s lawn care? Lawn care is going electric. And the revolution is here to stay. From conservative Alabama to crunchy California, electric lawn equipment is quietly sweeping the nation. Read more at The Washington Post.

Tips for Hiring an Arborist

Hurricanes, hail, thunderstorms and tornadoes: Mother Nature’s season of wild weather is upon us. Here’s what you need to know about hiring a tree care and removal service. It’s important to hire a trained arborist for both the tree health and protection of your property. Read more at The Washington Post.

Observation is the New Rule for Gardens

Conventional wisdom says you should do the same tasks in the same order every year. The director of horticulture at Brooklyn Bridge Park has a better idea. Gardening is not so much about following rules, as it is about following rules of observation. Read more at The New York Times.