Jungle lack of nutrition

Jungles can lack nutrition in the same way that humans can. National Geographic reports the Amazon jungle suffers from “chronic malnutrition” due to a lack of salt. This lack of salt puts a check on decomposers in the forests, and also allows plants to flourish. They simply pile up a bubble of carbon dioxide around them when they die with no decomposers to munch on them. Researchers sprinkled a small amount of salt back into the forest and the decomposers became abundant once more to eat plants and dead remains. These creatures are important because it keeps the forests more efficient and productive as well as keeping the carbon cycle moving at a fast pace. However, the drawback on the decomposers is they produce carbon dioxide, a lethal greenhouse gas. If the forest suddenly gets all the salt it needs either from researchers spraying it or hurricanes bringing it in, there will be a much higher CO2 output.

In essence, what is good for the forest is bad for humans. In this day and age, we seem to be so worried about global warming, preservation, and other environmental issues. But what happens when these ideas contradict each other? According to this article, preserving the forest is not possible without destroying the ozone. That means that we will eventually have to choose which one is more important. I don’t think humans should get to make this choice about what part of the Earth is the most important part and should be saved. I do not think that we should get involved with artificially sprinkling the forest with salt to stimulate monkey feces, but rather we should let the ecosystem find its own rhythm. Mother Nature has a way of fixing her problems. I think that somehow, more salt will naturally develop in the jungle, which will help the area thrive. In the meantime, it seems as though our efforts at conservation are not up to par and are ending up harming other parts of nature. The problem we are having is that we are only focusing on one small part of nature, and not realizing the consequences our actions are having on other parts on nature, even if we haven’t discovered them yet. I don’t want to say that we should emit all the carbon dioxide and other toxins we can to destroy the Earth, but I think our mass conservation efforts should be halted until we know more about how they will affect everything on the Earth.

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2 responses to “Jungle lack of nutrition

  1. I totally agree with you Debs. We should not be presenting an influence in nature. Besides, the universe has existed for quite a long time without us humans and it has fared pretty well. We don’t need to be god figures by pretending to “save” nature when we’re simply interrupting a beautiful balance. Remember the yin and yang: The good always balances out the bad.

  2. Its a very interesting idea that by helping out one specific thing to save the world, you really hurt the world at a different scale. It brings up the problem of our perspective and is something that we don’t seem to think about a lot of the time. Take Prius’ for example. We think they are wonderful to the everyday driver, good gas mileage and low emissions. And while there does not seem to be a clear verdict, they may actually have greater harm in their batteries, development and shipment across the globe. So keen observation Deborah, we too easily forget the harm that comes from our good intentions.

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