Reduce Carbon Footprint
The earth is on track to already surpass the 1.5°C global warming budget set for 2030 and most likely will pass the 2°C worst-case budget. This means impending dramatic negative consequences for not only humans, but all life on earth as we know it.
Economy ☼ Food Supply ☼ Water Supply ☼ Disease ☼ Extinction...
Every plan developed by climate change experts to save the human existence, as well as the existence of whats left of our animal, plant and fish populations, all require the immediate removal of
carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. So far, the only thing we know that can do this are trees, but the process takes too long and we constantly cut way more down than we plant. This process is called wood-based biogenic sequestration through afforestation and reforestation.
No amount of hardwood trees we plant today can reverse what we have already done to our planet. Every year we consume more and more fossil fuels, pollute more bodies of water, cut down more forests and produce more livestock to feed our ever growing population. It may seem there is no hope at all for our future, when looking at the stats...
But, we may have found an ancient secret weapon....
Air pollution has a range of negative impacts, including human health, damage to ecosystems, food crops and the built environment. The World Health Organisation (WHO) highlights air pollution as the greatest environmental risk to human health (note that this is based on current risk- longer-term environmental threats, such as climate change, may exceed this in the future). It’s estimated to be the cause of seven million premature deaths every year (4.3 million from ambient outdoor pollution, and 2.6 from households).
BAMBOO! BAMBOO! BAMBOO!
Could a grass be the solution? More specifically, an extremely fast growing, gigantic grass? - BAMBOO ... Most people don't know that bamboo is actually a grass and the fastest growing plant on earth! Here are some ways Bamboo could help save the planet:
1. Renewable resource. Depending on the species, bamboo can be harvested in one to five years. Hardwoods like oak take at least forty years to mature before they can be harvested. Almost 1 million acres of forests are lost each week worldwide to deforestation. Bamboo's versatility as a substitute for hardwoods offers a chance to drastically reduce that figure and protect the forests that we have left.
2. Absorbs greenhouse gases. Bamboo absorbs carbon dioxide and releases 35% more oxygen into the atmosphere than an equivalent stand of hardwood trees.
3. Amazing growth rate. Some species of bamboo grow more than three feet each day! No plant on the planet features a faster growth rate. When it is harvested, it will grow a new shoot from its extensive root system with no need for additional planting or cultivation.
4. Very little waste. After harvesting, virtually every part of the plant is used to make a wide variety of products. From soil-enriching mulch to beautiful furniture to chopsticks, every part of the plant can be utilized.
5. Versatility. Bamboo can replace the use of wood for nearly every application. Paper, flooring, furniture, charcoal, building materials, and much more can be made from bamboo. What's more, bamboo fibers are far stronger than wood fibers and much less likely to warp from changing atmospheric conditions.
6. No fertilizer, pesticides, or herbicides needed. Unlike most cash crops, bamboo requires no agricultural chemicals to thrive. Unlike cotton, which is one of the most intensely sprayed crops in the world and rapidly depletes the nutrients in the soil, bamboo sequesters nitrogen and cultivation does not add chemicals to the environment.
7. Soil protection. Once hardwood forests are clear-cut and the stumps are burned to provide fertilizer and space for growing crops, erosion inevitably occurs as the topsoil and nutrients are washed away by rainfall. The eroded soil then clogs rivers and streams and affects the lives of people and animals living downstream. Bamboo roots remain in place after harvesting where they prevent erosion and help retain nutrients for the next crop.
8. Economic development. In less developed countries where unemployment leads to civil unrest, bamboo production and the manufacturing of bamboo products provides job opportunities in areas that desperately need social and economic stability.
9. Bamboo grows in a variety of conditions. Bamboo can grow in arid regions where droughts cause other crops to fail and since the roots are left in place after harvesting, it helps to preserve vital moisture in the soil. From low wetlands to higher elevations in the mountains, bamboo thrives in a wide range of climates.
10. Optimism and cultural cooperation. In a fractious world where wars are fought over resources, the increasing popularity of bamboo products provides an opportunity for diverse cultures to settle their difference through trade and cooperation that benefits everyone.