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Saturday, February 6, 2010

Forests in the Eastern United States are growing faster than ever







A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has found evidence that forests in the Eastern United States are growing faster than they have in the past 225 years. " team of researchers used 22 years' worth of carefully accumulated measurements of hardwood forests in and near the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center, in Edgewater, Md., to show that their growth has accelerated significantly. On average, the stands were expanding at a rate of two extra tons of mass per acre per year, by the end of the study — the equivalent of a single two-foot-diameter tree, if you could grow a tree that big in a year. "We don't know exactly when it started," says co-author Geoffrey Parker, a forest ecologist at the Smithsonian. But the scientists do have an idea of the reason — or rather, three possible reasons, all of which are likely to be interrelated." The first is a 12% increase in atmospheric carbon dioxide since the study began — the same CO2 increase implicated in global warming. The second is the warming itself. And the third is an increase in the growing season, defined as the length of time between the last frost in spring and the first frost in fall, which is also a consequence of warming.""We couldn't narrow it down further than that," says Parker.


To read more about this story please click on the following link:


Source: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1960567,00.html


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Thoughts worth thinking about

"Our subconscious minds have no sense of humor, play no jokes and cannot tell the difference between reality and an imagined thought or image. What we continually think about eventually will manifest in our lives."-Sidney Madwed



Laws alone can not secure freedom of expression; in order that every woman and man present their views without penalty, there must be spirit of tolerance in the entire population.- Albert Einstein Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. - Leo Buscaglia



A person's true wealth is the good he or she does in the world. - Mohammed



Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty. -Albert Einstein



The best way to find yourself, is to lose yourself in the service of others. - Ghandi



The unselfish effort to bring cheer to others will be the beginning of a happier life for ourselves. - Helen Keller



Aim for success, not perfection. Never give up your right to be wrong, because then you will lose the ability to learn new things and move forward with your life. Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make yourself a happier and more productive person. - Dr. David M. Burns



Life is as dear to a mute creature as it is to man. Just as one wants happiness and fears pain, just as one wants to live and not die, so do other creatures. -His Holiness The Dalai Lama



Mankind's true moral test, its fundamental test (which lies deeply buried from view), consists of its attitude towards those who are at its mercy: animals. And in this respect mankind has suffered a fundamental debacle, a debacle so fundamental that all others stem from it. -



Milan Kundera, The Unbearable Lightness of Being



The worst sin towards our fellow creatures is not to hate them, but to be indifferent to them. That's the essence of inhumanity. -George Bernard Shaw

Ego's trick is to make us lose sight of our interdependence. That kind of ego-thought gives us a perfect justification to look out only for ourselves. But that is far from the truth. In reality we all depend on each other and we have to help each other. The husband has to help his wife, the wife has to help the husband, the mother has to help her children, and the children are supposed to help the parents too, whether they want to or not.-Gehlek Rinpoche Source: "The Best Buddhist Writing 2005 pg. 165

The hostile attitude of conquering nature ignores the basic interdependence of all things and events---that the world beyond the skin is actually an extension of our own bodies---and will end in destroying the very environment from which we emerge and upon which our whole life depends.