That’s how we roll
Society and most scientists blame global desertification and climate change on livestock, coal, and oil. Those are all resources and no resource can ever cause a problem. Iris our management of the resource is to blame.” ~ Allan Savory
Sarah’s latest book carries a profoundly simple message one of great hope for wildlife, for humanity, and for our planet.
In the 1950s when I joined what is now National Parks as a field biologist and researcher, wildlife management in Africa consisted of poaching prevention, water provision, and burning grasslands to produce a green flush. I concluded then that this wasn’t enough and that habitat destruction was endangering wildlife more than poaching was.
When people now talk about saving iconic species like elephants, rhinos pangolins, or wild dogs, they do note the terrible habitat destruction, but almost no one is addressing its cause. We now know that the cause is a result of human mismanagement and that it is impacting human populations too, as the land we depend upon desertifies, or dries out. We cannot save individual species – we have to look at entire ecosystems. There is a solution. This solution is Holistic Management.
For centuries, land degradation outside of national parks has been blamed on livestock. Like many people who were passionate about wildlife I, too, grew up loathing livestock. What didn’t make sense, however, was the fact that I was observing desertification in Africa, and later in North America, where there was no livestock, such as in the wonderful areas we were setting aside as future national parks in the
1950s and ’60s.
We only unraveled the mystery of desertification when we recognized that soil, soil life, plants, and animals developed together and not one before the other.