How scientists are trying to reverse the control of nature

How to reverse the control of nature

Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future by Elizabeth Kolbert (2021) 204 pages ★★★★☆

We do not live alone on Planet Earth. These, and more than 16,000 other endangered species, represent just a small part of the enormous cost we humans are paying for centuries of effort to “control nature.” Image: Tim Flatch via Condé Nast Traveler.

Exploring the efforts to reverse the control of nature

Loud noises or other disturbances cause Asian carp to leap into the air. Image: University of Illinois Prairie Research Institute

Invasive species

Flood control gone awry

Louisiana is disappearing into the Gulf of Mexico, in part because of changes engineered in the flow of the Mississippi River. These aerial photos depict the loss from 1932 to 2011. Image: National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Saving endangered species and reversing global warming

Using genetic engineering

The damage we do to the planet we share

  • Introducing invasive species like the Asian carp in the USA and rabbits in Australia, whether intentionally or not
  • Building cities and expanding the reach of forage for animals, thus causing us to strip the Earth bare of trees and encroach on millions of acres of arable land
  • Polluting the atmosphere — and our bones — with radiation from decades of nuclear testing
  • Contaminating the soil, the water, and our bodies alike with immeasurable quantities of manufactured chemicals
  • Despoiling the seas with torrents of plastic waste
  • And, of course, burning colossal tonnages of fossil fuels that spew forth carbon emissions which now girdle the skies above us

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