Ancient Pathways to a Sustainable Future

What can our ancestors teach us?

The Tracks In Chauvet Cave

The two sets of tracks were side by side. One of them was that of a young child, and the other of a wolf.
What if I were to tell you that these tracks were found deep within Chauvet Cave, high above the Ardeche River in France, a cave, which contains some of the most glorious Stone Age art ever found?

Chauvet cave is a marvel indeed, opening to us not only a window on the considerable artistic abilities of Paleolithic man, but also on his inner life, and perhaps in the case of the child and wolf, on his connections to the natural world.

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If you chunked up Idaho into areas each of 100 square miles and
evenly distributed people, elk and wolves among the chunks you
would have in each chunk 1,800 people, 140 elk, and 1 wolf. That
demonstrates how few wolves there really are. How are they to
fulfill their role of keystone predator

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Stephen Augustine’s Comments on Idaho’s 2011-12 Wolf Hunt

Stephen Augustine points out that the Idaho Fish & Game’s (IDF&G) charter requires them to manage game only for the benefit of hunters, and hopes that the agency will eventually be replaced by one that reflects the majority pro-wildlife views of Idaho’s citizens. He finds features of the present wolf hunt reminiscent of the bounties that resulted in the original extinction of wolves. Augustine points out that wolves are being persecuted, not because they wreck havoc in our forests, but on the contrary, because they were beginning to exert their appropriate age-old role of apex predators, and hunters and ranchers could not stand the competition.

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The Bear Hunter

What a great improvement these new high tech methods over the 1990s hunting methods. Now the odds are more on our side, and there is no need to get up at 5:30 AM, bundle up, trudge into the mountains, get cold, wet, dirty, and then sometimes not even get a bear. It will be very cold that coming night on the mountain, just as it has been for millennia

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Summary of Intergovernmental Panel Report On Climate Change

There are 5 reasons for concern. These risks are identified with higher confidence than in the previous TAR (Third Assessment Report of the IPCC, 2001):
1. There are threats to unique & vulnerable systems. e.g. polar, mountains, & coral reefs.
2. There are risks of extreme weather. e.g. droughts, heat waves, & floods.
3. Distribution of impacts & vulnerabilities –uneven. e.g. poor, elderly, low latitude, less developed, dry areas, mega deltas.
4. Aggregate impacts – e.g. net costs are projected to increase with amount of warming & time.
5. Risks of large-scale singularities:
e.g. There is high confidence that sea level rise would be much greater than in the 20th century, due largely to the contributions of the Greenland & Antarctic ice sheets, & that this could occur in century time scales.
(Recent observations, not accounted for in this report, could raise the rate of ice loss).

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We in Sandpoint do not have to wait for our government and most of the country to catch up with our understanding of this situation. We can start planning right now. We can work to assess what needs to be done to make our region more self sufficient in the basics, like food, fuel, and transportation, and to persuade our public officials to start planning for the inevitable.
Yes, we can come together and start to form a true community like the ones that prevailed in small town America little more than a century ago. A lot of the changes we have to make will be inconvenient and even painful. But Sandpoint at least will have a head start, and we may find some of the changes even to be good, with a renewed emphasis on family, friends, and community.

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Ancestors of African Pygmies Separated 60,000 Years Ago

All African Pygmies, inhabiting a large territory extending west-to-east along Central Africa, descend from a unique population who lived around 20,000 years ago, according to an international study led by researchers at the Institut Pasteur in Paris. The research concludes that the ancestors of present-day African Pygmies and farmers separated ~60,000 years ago.

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