Tweeting titbits 27.1.2011


Twitter is a mine of information about trees, forests, wildlife, urbanism – you name it, it’s there.

Here’s a few of the news items from this week.

 The US department of Agriculture Forest Service has developed an online guide to tree species choice. The particular choices in this software don’t apply to Australia but the concept is fantastic.

 It’s called i-tree species and is designed to provide ‘a relative rating for environmental benefits of each tree species at maturity’. The user enters state and city and the programme will produce a ranked list according to a number of characteristics. The user will still need local knowledge but what a great idea.

 A new world record has been discovered – the tallest pine on the planet was found by two tree hunters in Southern Oregon. It’s over 81metres tall. The Mail Tribune reported that the hunters’ hope was that the trees would keep growing rather than be cut down and that no trail or sign would lead to the grove of tall trees:

“When we came to this country, we wiped out the passenger pigeon, the great ox, the Carolina parakeet and almost took out the American bison,” Callahan said. “We are like the cancer on the planet.”

 There’s lots of unrest on twitter about UK government plans to sell off woodlands managed by the Forestry Department in budget cuts. There’s a petition here to try to block these moves:

The website points out that ancient forests are the UK’s version of rainforests.

The Guardian reported here that a ‘YouGov poll found that 84% of people agreed the woods and forests should be kept in public ownership for future generations, while only 2% disagreed.’

We’re so lucky in Australia in many ways. We miss out on some catastrophic environmental scourges – sudden oak death, colony collapse disorder in bees, emerald ash borer and a sad bat disease called white nose syndrome to name a few. Ash borer is due to an Asian beetle that arrived in the US is wooden crates from Asia and it threatens 7.5 billion ash trees in the US.

If it weren’t for our own home-grown scourge of greenhouse gas emissions…

February 2nd is World Wetlands Day and the Hunter Wetlands will be celebrating with a number of activities:

And on transport, Sustainable Cities blog had a story about London and cycling:

‘…Amsterdam in the Netherlands and Copenhagen in Denmark – two cities with such a well-integrated approach to urban cycling that they respectively see 32% and 40% of all trips taken on bike. London, on the other hand, manages around 2%.’

Anyone know what Newcastle’s is? I imagine it would be a touch on the woeful side.

More soon. Home


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