Saturday, 20 June 2015
Saturday Photo: Emerald Ash Borer and the Sixth Extinction
Lots in the news about what climate change and human intervention in the natural world lately: the Pope's encyclical on the environment is a case in point.
I thought of that this morning when out walking and saw, once again, these signs on several large ash trees on Mount Royal. Unfortunately the treatment against the emerald ash borer, which was started last fall, didn't work for several that didn't leaf out this spring. They have become sad ghosts.
Earlier this week, the city took down several younger ash trees on our street as part of the attempt to contain the disease. The trees had been planted in the last five or six years to replace aging maples. All of them appeared relatively healthy, but the strategy is to create a cordon sanitaire around affected areas, apparently.
They're supposed to be replaced in the near future, but with what I have no idea. Once again the balance of nature has been upset by the introduction of something. As Le Devoir reports this morning, we are in the midst of what appears to be the sixth great extinction of life on earth, with consequences that were not even imagined only a few years ago.
Posted by Mary Soderstrom