The spread of these species will cause changes in soil acidity, the bacteria and fungi in the soil, and in how organic matter decomposes. Changes in soil chemistry, as well as degradation of permafrost, will cause a cascade of changes, with “consequences on all components of terrestrial ecosystems”, said Cannone.
These native plant species in Antarctica have gained a stronghold on more coastal territory. The decrease of fur seals that controlled the growth of the minuscule plants and warmer temperatures from climate change have contributed to the sudden explosion of the cold-adapted flora.
Most polar crisis news focuses on the Arctic, with its human cultures, diverse mega-fauna, and record-breaking weather disasters. The southern polar and oceanic regions are also under crisis. Mineral and petroleum extraction from seabeds can lead to mass destruction of ecosystems. Indigenous people have vital reasons to halt this destruction.
Two cubs had found a home around Gazprom’s far northern Kharasavey field installations. Now they have been exiled to a remote national park.
— Read on thebarentsobserver.com/en/arctic-industry-and-energy/2022/02/polar-bears-threatened-arctic-oilmen-are-removed
Humans no longer have a demanding need for whale products. We have electric light, beef, and no-meat proteins. Whale bone and ivory have been replaced with synthetic materials that are safer to use. Whaling was always difficult and dangerous work. It was romanticized in fiction, film and song. The hunt took its toll of young men.
As we have explored the natural relationship between whales and environment, and humanity’s interaction with both, whales are finding freedom to be sentient creatures.
I am educated in these old ways; I was the curator of an historic museum in the north. We had a reel shot in the early 1970s of local men cutting ice on the lake using the tools their fathers and grandfathers used. Cutting and storing ice wasn’t some desperate measure; it was part of the rhythm of the year.
That rhythm is broken, perhaps never to be replayed again. Lakes don’t freeze through anymore, except in the northern tier. The Amish who have moved to the colder areas of North America in search of farm land will do this, adopting it into their annual cycle. Perhaps it would still be practical for small communities in the north, cutting back on the use of electricity and the cost of transporting major appliances long distances.
It would change how food is sold and transported, with more reliance on local crops and agriculture. It would change how people cook and store food. It might revive other methods of chilling food and preserving it. It could change nutritional intake, perhaps for the better, or perhaps not.
When we try to fit an old technology into a post-modern world, we have to account for a changed environment. I sew on an antique treadle sewing machine; I spin wool by hand and weave it on a large floor loom, technologies which do not require power outside the strength of the human body. But buying modern, industrial supplies for these activities requires adaptation. Polyester threads do not feed as well as linen or cotton threads. Finishing work on a garment requires more hand sewing.
My partner wears an antique military overcoat. Recently, a button came off, one made of Bakelite. I attached it again with a polyester thread. It was not strong enough. The original thread was a thick cotton buttonhole twist. I ordered button twist, but it is not as thick or as well spun as the original. I considered spinning my own, and I may yet ply two strands of modern twist together. Our clothes bought in a commercial establishment aren’t made to last three generations.
And our food bought through supermarkets isn’t meant to last long fresh. We are meant to cook it within a week. Vegetables are not grown to be processed into home canned or pickled goods.
We are moving into a new era of adaptation.