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'Mobile nature reserves' could save species


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#1    Still Waters

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Posted 18 February 2012 - 11:57 AM

www.guardian.co.uk said:

Some of the world's most endangered marine life could be saved from extinction by establishing mobile nature reserves that would protect vulnerable species as they moved around the oceans, scientists say.

The initiative could provide safe havens for endangered loggerhead and leatherback turtles, albatrosses, sharks and other travelling species, and sea life that is abandoning its historic territories in response to climate change.

Under the proposals, trawlers would agree to avoid certain stretches of the sea at set times of the year when endangered species are mating, spawning or passing through. Those ocean regions might move with the seasons, ocean currents and long-term environmental events like El Niño, the researchers said.

Mobile marine reserves could bolster existing protected areas that draw an invisible cordon around fixed regions of the oceans, such as coral reefs and sea mounts, where ecological diversity is linked to geographical features.

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#2    redhen

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 06:14 AM

So it's come to this, pity.

Reminds me of an old sci-fi movie, Silent Running.

"Mobile nature reserves" are sent off into space, with Joan Baez singing some hippe song, Bruce Dern, playing a psycho scientist, and the original "cute" robots that George Lucas emulated.

It sounds like techno pie-in-the-sky, like Regan's "Star Wars" (SDI). What a waste of money, time and resources. Can't we just simply get a grip on the exponential human population growth instead?


#3    Little Fish

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 01:42 PM

View Postredhen, on 19 February 2012 - 06:14 AM, said:

Can't we just simply get a grip on the exponential human population growth instead?
Where did you get that malthusian idea from?
most of the world's human population is in decline or will be in decline soon. I think we talked about this before.

edit - http://www.prospectm...opulation-myth/

Edited by Little Fish, 19 February 2012 - 02:08 PM.


#4    Doug1o29

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 02:45 PM

View Postredhen, on 19 February 2012 - 06:14 AM, said:

So it's come to this, pity.

"Mobile nature reserves"
In a sense we already have them - on land.  Making hunting illegal at certain times of year is, in effect, creating a temporary reserve.  In many western states, the Division of Wildlife has the authority to regulate the hunt, controlling bag limits and even closing some areas to all hunting for anywhere from a season to a decade.  There's no reason this couldn't be applied to the sea.
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#5    Doug1o29

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Posted 19 February 2012 - 02:53 PM

View PostLittle Fish, on 19 February 2012 - 01:42 PM, said:

Where did you get that malthusian idea from?
Malthus' exponential growth idea used to be taught in biology classes.  Some antiquated textbooks still have it.  That model has been superceded by something resembling the logistic growth model - sort of.  No model is accurate much beyond twenty years.  The problem is in predicting changes in birth rates - too many, mostly social, variables impact that.  Once they're born, it's fairly easy to predict how many will die and when.

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most of the world's human population is in decline or will be in decline soon. I think we talked about this before.
Indeed we did.  Many, especially western European, countries are already at ZPG.  The US should get there in another 40 years or so.  The world as a whole, looks like it might get there by the end of this century - maybe.  Unfortunately, the delay will mean world populations in the vicinity of ten billion people.
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#6    BaneSilvermoon

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 03:25 AM

View PostLittle Fish, on 19 February 2012 - 01:42 PM, said:

Where did you get that malthusian idea from?
most of the world's human population is in decline or will be in decline soon. I think we talked about this before.

edit - http://www.prospectm...opulation-myth/

I'm not sure I believe the numbers in your link.

Quote

Here are the numbers. Forty years ago, the average woman had between five and six kids. Now she has 2.6. This is getting close to the replacement level which, allowing for girls who don’t make it to adulthood, is around 2.3

I read that as saying the average amount of children a woman was having in 1970 was 5-6. Meaning an equal number of woman had more than 5 children as the number of woman who had less than 5. I know in the past it was common to have more children, but I have trouble believing it was at that level.

We're getting off topic though.

Edited by BaneSilvermoon, 20 February 2012 - 03:26 AM.

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#7    redhen

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 01:51 PM

View PostLittle Fish, on 19 February 2012 - 01:42 PM, said:

Where did you get that malthusian idea from?
most of the world's human population is in decline or will be in decline soon. I think we talked about this before.

Yes we probably did, and I still stand behind the demographics of the UN, up to a point. You're right, the West has seen a sharp decline in birth rates due to education, egalitarianism, contraceptives and abortions. This is not the case for many third world countries; "Between 2005 and 2050, the populations of Afghanistan, Burundi, the  Democratic Republic of the Congo, Guinea-Bissau, Liberia, Niger, Timor-Leste and Uganda are  projected to increase at least threefold."

from -  World Population Prospects (2006), The 2006 Revision
United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs
Population Division

I've seen UN reports where they predict global population leveling off around 2050, but I didn't see any scientific basis for that claim.


There are those who don't believe there are limits to growth, like economists, land developers and politicians. Then are those who do believe there limits to growth. In this category are 1,700 of the world's leading scientists, including the majority of Nobel laureates in the sciences.

http://www.ucsusa.or...scientists.html

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#8    Little Fish

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 02:35 PM

its not just the west that is declining, it is most countries except the poorest and generally black african countries. population will rise for the next few decades and will then start to decrease. poverty and poor education are the main factors that lead to increase in population. contraceptives are useless if your means of survival requires a large family.
the green movement and the aristocratic elite of the west who are the ones mainly claiming there are too many people, want to deindustrialise the west which will lead to poverty which would likely reverse the decline in population in the west.

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"The earth is finite. Its ability to absorb wastes and destructive effluent is finite. Its ability to provide food and energy is finite. Its ability to provide for growing numbers of people is finite. And we are fast approaching many of the earth’s limits."
these are problems that technology and ingenuity solve. they always have, and malthusians have been banging on about too many people for hundreds of years. when you say "exponential" it means that population growth will go vertical very quickly. not even the UN says this. there are a lot of old people in the system and people die, especially older ones. population growth over the next 100 years with the last 100 years is likely to be a bell shaped curve.


#9    Doug1o29

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Posted 20 February 2012 - 04:10 PM

View PostLittle Fish, on 20 February 2012 - 02:35 PM, said:

its not just the west that is declining, it is most countries except the poorest and generally black african countries. population will rise for the next few decades and will then start to decrease. poverty and poor education are the main factors that lead to increase in population. contraceptives are useless if your means of survival requires a large family.

the green movement and the aristocratic elite of the west who are the ones mainly claiming there are too many people, want to deindustrialise the west which will lead to poverty which would likely reverse the decline in population in the west.

these are problems that technology and ingenuity solve. they always have, and malthusians have been banging on about too many people for hundreds of years. when you say "exponential" it means that population growth will go vertical very quickly. not even the UN says this. there are a lot of old people in the system and people die, especially older ones. population growth over the next 100 years with the last 100 years is likely to be a bell shaped curve.
Why do you keep hammering on Malthus?  Malthusian exponential growth is an obsolete concept.  That has been known for a long time.

It does have one valid point, though:  If you look at the logistic growth curve, the lower end of it, below the inflection point, looks exactly like an exponential curve and data that fits it can be modeled very well with a Malthusian model.  Above the inflection point, the logistic curve approaches a horizontal line asymptotically and the Malthusian curve doesn't work.  That horizontal line is called a "limiting factor."  It may be lack of food, lack of space, shortage of water, disease or any of a number of different things that keep a lid on populations.  Those limiting factors are what turn a Malthusian curve into a logistic curve.  Were it not for such shortages, the Malthusian curve would be an accurate representation of population growth.  Limiting factors don't have to be shortages.  In humans, birth control could be a limiting factor.

What it boils down to is sooner or later, population runs into one or more of those limiting factors and the rate of growth starts to slow.  That has already happened with people.  Our populations are still increasing, but at a decreasing rate.  We are running into a limiting factor, but as yet, we aren't real sure about what that is, or even if it is the same in different countries.

Technology can raise a limit to the point where a different one replaces it.  That happened in the US in the 1940s.  Horse-drawn agriculture placed a 185 million cap on US population.  When mechanization changed that, voluntary birth control replaced it, but at a higher level.  It now looks as if water will be the new limiting factor on US population.

Natural resources require a certain "growing stock" to maintain optimum productivity.  If you are growing timber, you need to maintain forests of new trees so you will have something to cut 40 years from now.  If population pressure gets too high (The price of wood goes way up.), then landowners cut their growing stock, degrading future productivity and forcing the next generation to live with less wood.

By using up growing stock, populations can overrun the limiting factors.  That's when limiting factors go into decline.  When that happens, populations have to decline too.  That can be a gentle decline (family planning) or a violent one (disease, starvation), but either way, populations are coming down.  And that's what the "aristocratic elite" are concerned about.  We'd like to prevent such a disaster.  But whether we can or can't, population will peak out and start to come down.

Sooner or later, technology runs into a limiting factor.  There is only so much oil, so much farm land, so much water.  The decline in population growth rate is evidence that we're already approaching a limiting factor.


One other thought:  concern about the environment is not at the top of anyone's priority list.  Only after you have enough to eat, a place to live and a decent life for your family can you be concerned about the environment.  And that says a whole lot about why it is the "aristocratic elite" who are concerned.  The rest of the world is too busy just trying to survive.  A starving man will kill the last elephant to feed his family, or cut the last tree, or shoot the last polar bear - he can't worry about tomorrow if he doesn't make it through today.

If we do not figure out ways to feed, clothe, house and educate the world's people, we will lose the environmental battle.  It falls to the "aristocratic elite" to take up the burden because the rest of the world is too busy just trying to put food on the table.
Doug

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#10    SatampraZeiros

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Posted 25 February 2012 - 12:30 AM

would that really save them though? isnt it just another term of enslavement? I just wanna be around to see Charlton Heston yelling "Soilent Green is people!!" lol





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