Since good data started being collected in the 1950’s the loss of ocean plant life during each 5 year span equals the loss of an entire Amazon Rainforest.
That’s 10 Amazon Rainforests worth of CO2 capturing plant life eradicated in the past 50 years!
Our ONE Amazon rainforest is responsible for repurposing 2 billion tonnes of CO2 into plant life each year.
Do the simple math! Restoring ocean plant life back to its state of health of 50 years ago will repurpose into ocean life double the net 10 million tonne per year CO2 problem of the human race each year!
That the Amazon Rainforest is threatened is an undisputed fact. 20% of the Amazon has been cut down in the past century. The cry of alarm has gone far and wide that this loss of the precious ‘lungs of the earth’ and home to vast biodiversity is made by hundreds of organizations around the world. All call to protect, preserve, and even restore the Amazon and that is a great concept to support. But if we restore ocean plant life we can do far more, far more, for far less cost, and both save and feed the world almost immediately… immediately being less than 10 years.
The Amazon rainforest is a wonderous place, with 3 billion trees it is the largest rainforest in the world. It spans nine countries in South America and is 25 times the area of the UK. As the Amazon’s plant life grows, it accounts for a quarter of the carbon dioxide absorbed by the land each year. The Amazon however along with all of Earth’s forests combined cover just 8.4% of this planet. The oceans cover 72%, so no matter how much you associate with Team Earth you need to forget your team boosterism and begin to think of this as Planet Ocean. It is of the oceans that life here was born and it is of the oceans that life as we know it, surely prefer it, must be cared for.
Let’s Forget Our Team Mentality
Given that we all are, and ought to be, very concerned about the damage of our high and rising CO2 on our planet lets examine CO2 in the context of the two Teams, EARTH and OCEAN. There really is no contest on this blue planet as the oceans manage far more than the Lion’s share of carbon. If one wants to poke at the system it might be best to put that poke where it will needs to make the smallest change.
Basic Team Statistics
Team Earth vs. Team Ocean – click to enlarge
I have discovered through direct personal engagements that a key problem with working to do good for the environment and nature including humans is that humanity seems to always view things as a competition of teams or political parties or religions or nations. We gravitate toward the Us vs,. Them mentality in everything. As an ecologist who has been working with nature for a lifetime, well 50 years of working time so far, I keep running into the same wall as I am and have never been a sports-minded sort of guy.
Restoring Ocean Plankton Pastures: It Just Works!
OK enough of the reminiscence and on with the simple prescription for how to feed and save this world. The feeding part of the prescription is important and in speaking so I don’t speak of feeding just humans. All of earthly life deserves to have access to adequate nutritious food. And since the largest biome on this blue planet is our oceans lets focus our attention there.
The oceans are fast becoming blue deserts because of our high and rising CO2. This has little to do with either climate change or global warming which are effects of CO2 most commonly linked to our land and atmosphere.
As the graphic above shows when it comes to CO2 the oceans are where the action is. CO2 relating to atmosphere and land combined has only 5% of the role it has in the 95% zone that are our oceans. Since 95% of the impact of CO2 occurs in the oceans lets go there first with our remedies. And guess what the oceans innate ability to manage CO2 offers us a 20 times multiplier on the effectiveness of our ocean solutions!
The simple fact is that the oceans have become and are becoming ever more desolate blue deserts. This is happening because the vital mineral micro-nutrients they require for their ocean pasture grass to grow, their phyto-plankton, is missing as dust in the wind has been drastically reduced due to global greening effects of our high and rising CO2.
As we return and replenish the mineral rich dust our fossil fuel age has denied the ocean pastures they return immediately to historic health and abundance. Fortunately in a fraction of the time it has taken our industrial age to create the global CO2 crisis by restoring ocean plankton cooling capacity to recent levels of health and abundance we will save our world at a cost of mere millions per year instead of trillions. Of course this regeneration of the largest part of Nature, the 72% that is oceans, at such low-cost is anathema to those seeking their share of the trillion-dollar per year terrestrial solutions that cannot cure the crisis
Math gives ocean restoration a 20:1 advantage over work on earth like planting trees, Mother Nature rewards our good work by multiplying that advantage 1000 fold!
Since the first and foremost impact of our nearly trillion tonnes of CO2 emitted into our air, sea, and terrestrial ecosystems since the start of the fossil fuel age is destined to be dissolved into the oceans that is where our small efforts benefit from that 20 fold multiplier effect. Indeed the demonstrated technological advantage of restoring ocean plant life is vastly greater than 20 fold as the ocean lends a powerful hand multiplying our puny effort a thousand fold. In this way we can at a cost of mere millions effect restoration work that would cost billions if implemented on land.
The ocean solution it turns out is perfectly safe, sustainable, fast, and incredibly low-cost – I like to say it is ‘dirt cheap’ as dirt is the single magic dust that the oceans are dying for lack of.
By restoring ocean pastures in the World’s Seven Seas billions of additional fish will every year fill fishermen’s nets to overflowing providing sufficient food to help end world hunger. When ocean pastures return to health and abundance it takes only a few years, 2-5, for these billions of additional fish to be providing nutritious food for all.
The cost will be a scant few millions of dollars per year, easily affordable by the just a very few of we common people. The ocean pastures will return to historic health and abundance when, with our help, they repurpose billions of tonnes of CO2 into fresh ocean life, that is the simple scientific fact of photosynthesis.
There is an additional benefit to restoring ocean plant life. That’s all about how ocean plant life is the principal controlling force for the climate of our blue planet. Plankton does this by making most of the cloudiness that reflects sunlight back into space keeping us cool, alas with the cataclysmic loss of plankton ocean warming is driving ‘global warming.’ Here’s a link to a post all about “Plankton Cooling” recently lost but not forgotten.
IT JUST WORKS!
Here’s a photo (below) that speaks a thousand words. In 2012 with just 10 shipmates I took a modest fishing boat out to sea in the NE Pacific. We carefully spread 100 tonnes of mineral dust on a dying ocean pasture. The cost of that blessed dust is less than $50,000 (fifty thousand dollars). The ocean pasture turned from being a blue desert into a lush green pasture. The very next year the fish came back, hundreds of millions of additional salmon.
Here’s what you can do with your life and/or with a very modest sum of money.
To begin join me, lend a hand to prepare for our voyages of recovery.
Help us charter a few modest fishing boats, one for each of the World’s Seven Seas.
We will buy enough mineral rich dust, a few thousand tonnes, to sustainably restore one to several ocean pastures in each of the world’s Seven Seas.
We will find hardy some shipmates along the way to lend a hand, we don’t need many in fact in my work proving this process there were only 12 shipmates aboard my ocean pasture restoration ship in the summer of 2012.
The work is hard for few days at a time to restore each pasture but that work is remarkable as the ocean pasture changes from a dying blue desert into a Garden of Eden in 3 days after receiving the sacrament of dust we deliver.
This is not a one-off job, it requires that the ship and noble ocean pasture-folk return to their ocean pasture more than once each year and continue to do this for the next 100 years and more.
The dire and deadly poisoning of our planets air with a trillion tonnes of CO2 already emitted and surely another trillion tonnes to be emitted before our fossil fuel age is done requires that we be good shepherds of our ocean pastures for centuries.
If you like this idea and want to help I hope you will contact me. I stand ready to teach you what I have learned about how to feed and save the world. I’ll be going to sea on the Seven Ships to Save The Seven Seas to teach those aboard how to become good shepherds of our ocean pastures. You are most welcome to come along and lend a hand, together you and I will re-create the Miracle of Fishes and provide billions of fish to feed the hungry!
Don’t think for a moment I am against planting trees. I have a long history with trees going back to the early 1970’s when I founded a ‘hippy’ treeplanter company in Canada. Though the company was sold in the mid-1990’s it is still planting trees today, some hundred million+ and counting. I was just out planting trees with my grandchildren a few days ago so I am not done yet with my duty to the trees. I am after all an Earthling. Though one who lives aside and astride the ocean whenever I can.
I restore Seas and Trees, join me.
Here’s a bonus a short video of my work back in 2002 on my first ocean pasture restoration effort, undersail on the 100 year old sailing ship Ragland, trying to do something to help the planet.
Here’s a video of the trip!
I’m the guy in the Hawaiian shirt up to my elbows in ‘liquid rust.’ For more details on the trip and my experiment you can read about it in the Journal Nature Jan. 2003!