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Wildlife

The Complicated Relationship Between Agriculture and Wildlife

January 13, 2020
agriculture and wildlife

How many wild animals are killed by farming practices? While scientists know there’s a problem, they’re unable to pinpoint a precise figure.

Some of the biggest drivers of biodiversity decline include overexploitation — harvesting animals from the wild at rates that can’t replenish — and agriculture, which consists of the production of food, livestock farming, aquaculture, tree cultivation and more. 

According to experts, agriculture and the overexploitation of resources is a more significant risk to biodiversity than climate change. In fact, nearly 75% of the world’s threatened species face overuse, compared to only 19% affected by climate change. 

The Sumatran rhinoceros, for example — which people illegally hunt for its meat and horn — is one of 4,049 species threatened by this problem. Other animals that poachers target include the Western gorilla and Chinese pangolin. 

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Wildlife

How The Construction Industry Can Disrupt Wildlife

January 1, 2020
wildlife and construction

The construction industry has made many changes to move toward sustainability. Companies praise the advantages, while industry leaders, such as the U.S. Green Building Council and the Green Building Initiative, set eco-friendly standards. Still, people acknowledge construction has an undeniable impact on wildlife. In 2018, the U.S. spent more than $300 billion on new public development alone.

It will be challenging for any industry to cease environmental harm. Wildlife and construction, in particular, are a poor match. Environmentalists around the world hope companies will make strides towards a future without animal cruelty and ecosystem destruction.

Habitat Intrusion

Animals suffer when industries advance and expand, uprooting their homes. Businesses tear down forests and natural habitats to make room for shopping malls, restaurants and more. Some species learn how to thrive in these urban environments, such as foxes, birds, squirrels, opossums and more.

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Environment, Wildlife

Making Livestock Agriculture Sustainable and Cost-Effective

December 4, 2019
livestock agriculture

Livestock agriculture is a farming practice that involves raising animals for food and byproducts, such as wool, oils and leather. Humans have used this practice for centuries. Yet the industry has changed significantly with the introduction of various technologies, an ever-growing population, the societal push for eco-friendly initiatives and the demand for transparency.

Farmers today are concerned about their crops and herd. They also fret over future operations. How long can they remain profitable? More than 1 billion people depend on livestock agriculture to make a living and provide resources. With pressure to become an eco-friendly industry, farmers need to consider how to make the practice sustainable and cost-effective.

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Environment, Wildlife

How to Avoid Excess Pollution When Animal Farming on Your Homestead

November 22, 2019
animal farming pollution

Many farming techniques has been wreaking havoc on the environment. Not only are they damaging land, contributing to greenhouse gas emissions and polluting our water sources, but they’re also participating in the maltreatment of livestock. Because of this, animal rights activist and environmentally conscious people have been trying to take on the corporate food producers with none other than homestead farming.

Individuals with access to farmland have taken on small amounts of livestock to raise and then eat. These new-age farmers are working hard to give these animals a good life while still maintain their need for meat and dairy. City dwellers have taken to green spaces in densely populated areas and are inventing creative ways to grow fruits and vegetables, with inventions like vertical and rooftop gardens.

Are you interested in running a self-sustaining homestead farm? Here are some ways you can be sure that you’re taking care of the Earth!

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Environment, Wildlife

The Best Animals for Homesteading Beginners

November 11, 2019
best animals for homesteading

Many people spend years dreaming about owning their own homestead. A homestead gives you space to spread out and live how you want to, without the pressures of neighborhood watchdogs and community rules.

Once you finally get that homestead, the possibilities are endless. What will you grow on your land? How will you use it? You may feel inclined to start raising animals, as many homesteaders do. It’s a big step towards living on sustainable land and minimizing your carbon footprint.

The problem is that not everyone grows up on a farm, so you may not know where to start. Instead of guessing which animals you should raise, read about these animals that are the best for homesteading beginners. You’ll start off with easy and rewarding farm animals that will help you build your sustainable homesteading skills.

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Wildlife

How Drilling Could Cause Extinctions in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge

November 4, 2019
arctic national wildlife refuge

The Proposed Impact of Oil Development in the Arctic

On September 12th, the Trump Administration’s Interior Department published a final plan to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to gas and oil development and leasing. This is the first time in history that the government will open leasing opportunities to drill from the ANWR. The plan will open 1.56 million acres on the Arctic Coastal Plain to promote the development of fossil fuels. The sanctuary in full is 19.3 million acres. Among one of the most feared impacts, there is a rising worry that upcoming oil and gas drilling may severely damage the wildlife habitat. In particular, the combination of drilling and climate change may lead to bird extinctions.

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Wildlife

Wildlife Extinction Is Hurting More Than Just Animals

October 21, 2019
wildlife extinction

When people think about wildlife extinction, they often ponder how creatures like the woolly mammoth and the dodo bird now only exist through media and research. However, it does more than eradicate animals. Here’s an eye-opening breakdown of how extinction’s effects often get overlooked.

It Could Trigger the Decline of the Human Population

A sobering report from the United Nations warns that 1 million species are at risk for extinction. The organization says it’s not too late for everyone to work together, from a local scale to an international one, to enact positive changes.

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Wildlife

Economic Benefits of Wildlife Conservation vs. Eco-Tourism?

October 7, 2019
economic benefits of wildlife conservation

Eco-tourism — travel to areas that conserve the natural environment — makes up one of the largest segment of global tourism income. It’s also one of the fastest-growing kinds of tourism, and responsible for producing more than $28 billion in revenue for developing nations. And when eco-tourism works well, it conserves the fragile habitats as it provides income for local communities and indigenous peoples.

But while eco-tourism can provide many benefits for both the environment and local people, not all eco-tourism is sustainable and beneficial to local communities and conservation efforts.

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Wildlife

How the Trump Administration Has Endangered Wildlife

September 19, 2019
trump and wildlife

Over the next half-century, human beings will drive so many species to extinction that we will essentially “set back the clock” on earth’s biodiversity by three to five million years. The Union of Concerned Scientists predicts that 67% of currently endangered species, and 99% of those already critically endangered, will be lost to us within 100 years.

With stakes this high, there’s only one question we need to ask ourselves, as individuals and organizations, when we think about what we’re doing to our one and only home:

“Am I helping, or am I making the problem worse?”

This is the question now in front of the Trump White House and our Corporate Congress. There is presently no reason to think this administration’s environmental legacy will be anything other than a dark mark on our recent history — and a blow to a living planet that can’t take any more bad news right now.

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Wildlife

Animal Disaster Rescue Will Need to Evolve With Climate Change

August 15, 2019
animal disaster rescue

This may not be that widely known, but in 2006 Congress passed bipartisan legislation called the PETS Act, or the Pets Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act. The passing of this law coincided with the widespread criticism of FEMA and the executive branch as Hurricane Katrina was pummeling New Orleans.

The PETS Act was an important step forward in our collective response to natural disasters and how we go about reuniting animals with their families after the worst has passed.

With global climate change making both the risk and intensity of such disasters worse, the time has come to re-evaluate whether our current protocols are good enough for the task ahead. It’s vital to determine how well our homes and communities have prepared for whatever might happen, including to our animal brothers and sisters.

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