Jump to content
House Price Crash Forum
Sign in to follow this  
PeanutButter

How long can we last?

Recommended Posts

Without insects?

Quote

 

Insects could vanish within a century at current rate of decline, says global review

The rate of insect extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles. 

The world’s insects are hurtling down the path to extinction, threatening a “catastrophic collapse of nature’s ecosystems”, according to the first global scientific review.

More than 40% of insect species are declining and a third are endangered, the analysis found. The rate of extinction is eight times faster than that of mammals, birds and reptiles. The total mass of insects is falling by a precipitous 2.5% a year, according to the best data available, suggesting they could vanish within a century.

The planet is at the start of a sixth mass extinction in its history, with huge losses already reported in larger animals that are easier to study. But insects are by far the most varied and abundant animals, outweighing humanity by 17 times. They are “essential” for the proper functioning of all ecosystems, the researchers say, as food for other creatures, pollinators and recyclers of nutrients.

Insect population collapses have recently been reported in Germany and Puerto Rico, but the review strongly indicates the crisis is global. The researchers set out their conclusions in unusually forceful terms for a peer-reviewed scientific paper: “The [insect] trends confirm that the sixth major extinction event is profoundly impacting [on] life forms on our planet.

“Unless we change our ways of producing food, insects as a whole will go down the path of extinction in a few decades,” they write. “The repercussions this will have for the planet’s ecosystems are catastrophic to say the least.”

 

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/10/plummeting-insect-numbers-threaten-collapse-of-nature

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Might start looking into this.

 

I'm a fan of Chris Martenson (peak prosperity), he is always going on about this.  To be honest it was one of the parts of his thesis that I took least seriously.

Edited by reddog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Insects are a very important part of our world, we would all suffer greatly without them, a fine balance of nature...Spiders are fascinating, they feed on flys that carry germs that spread disease helping to control numbers......even though spiders are not insects, they are an important part of our eco system.

Ladybirds are interesting the feed on aphids that eat our crops and flowers, seeing more of the harlequin ladybird (hibernating at the moment) who also feed on aphids, they look different to our native ladybirds but are just as important.......then there is the tree bumblebee that will often make their nest in a bird box high up, unlike our native bumblebees, all excellent pollinators......both these foreign insects that have evolved to make their homes here are more than welcome......all the same but different.😉

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The decline is a serious concern, but unfortunately yet again they've spoiled the concern with drawing a ridiculous conclusion about them all being threatened within a century. Such scaremongering is counterproductive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember splattered windscreens, flocks of sparrows everywhere. Chasing butterflies, dragonflies. Even thick ruffles of moths around street lights. 

It seems an age ago. 

Used to live near a bee keeper association - bees, bees and then last year the odd one or two. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, reddog said:

Might start looking into this.

 

I'm a fan of Chris Martenson (peak prosperity), he is always going on about this.  To be honest it was one of the parts of his thesis that I took least seriously.

Good shout, just checked him out. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, PeanutButter said:

I remember splattered windscreens, flocks of sparrows everywhere. Chasing butterflies, dragonflies. Even thick ruffles of moths around street lights.

Interesting point, there do seem to be fewer insects getting splattered. At least I see dragonflies from time to time around my garden (there's water nearby). There seems to be no shortage of wasps and flies in the summer though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Riedquat said:

The decline is a serious concern, but unfortunately yet again they've spoiled the concern with drawing a ridiculous conclusion about them all being threatened within a century. Such scaremongering is counterproductive.

I was trying to explain to my wife, who doesn't like creepy crawlies, that without insects the birds would starve. She thought for a moment and replied "there's plenty of worms" :lol:.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/02/2019 at 04:43, Riedquat said:

The decline is a serious concern, but unfortunately yet again they've spoiled the concern with drawing a ridiculous conclusion about them all being threatened within a century. Such scaremongering is counterproductive.

And who's out there actually counting all these insects?

I remember reading an article a few years ago about some animal in South America that had supposedly been extinct for decades... then a biologist was sitting outside a bar and one of them just walked past him. Once he started looking around that area he found a bunch of them... but no-one knew because no-one had actually looked for them for years because extinct.

As you say, there really are serious concerns about a lot of animals being killed off. But the level of scaremongering is becoming ludicrous as the left grow desperate for any Narrative that will let them continue to demand global government.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/02/2019 at 05:10, Riedquat said:

Interesting point, there do seem to be fewer insects getting splattered.

You should try driving around here. My girlfriend's mother lives about 350 miles away, and when we go to visit we usually stop at a petrol station about half-way there so we can wipe enough bug-splatter off the windscreen to be able to see for the rest of the trip.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, MarkG said:

You should try driving around here. My girlfriend's mother lives about 350 miles away, and when we go to visit we usually stop at a petrol station about half-way there so we can wipe enough bug-splatter off the windscreen to be able to see for the rest of the trip.

I was in Canada the year after they stopped blanket spraying of DDT from aircraft (1976?). The mosquitoes certainly came back with a vengeance. One night I was bitten so many times that my back was completely covered in bites, hundreds of them, about 5mm apart.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 14/02/2019 at 04:32, MarkG said:

And who's out there actually counting all these insects?

I remember reading an article a few years ago about some animal in South America that had supposedly been extinct for decades... then a biologist was sitting outside a bar and one of them just walked past him. Once he started looking around that area he found a bunch of them... but no-one knew because no-one had actually looked for them for years because extinct.

As you say, there really are serious concerns about a lot of animals being killed off. But the level of scaremongering is becoming ludicrous as the left grow desperate for any Narrative that will let them continue to demand global government.

Scaremongering is scary! People hate being scared and generally will do anything to stop the feeling, including complete denial. 

You ask who is counting the insects. Here is the German study (referenced in the article) https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0185809

The research, published in the journal Plos One, is based on the work of dozens of amateur entomologists across Germany who began using strictly standardised ways of collecting insects in 1989. Special tents called malaise traps were used to capture more than 1,500 samples of all flying insects at 63 different nature reserves.

 The malaise traps set in protected areas and reserves, which scientists say makes the declines even more worrying. Photograph: Courtesy of Courtesy of Entomologisher Verein Krefeld

When the total weight of the insects in each sample was measured a startling decline was revealed. The annual average fell by 76% over the 27 year period, but the fall was even higher – 82% – in summer, when insect numbers reach their peak.

This article cites all references and I have no reason to believe entomologists would get together to create a massive fraudulent lie. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/oct/18/warning-of-ecological-armageddon-after-dramatic-plunge-in-insect-numbers

Here is the Puerto Rico study https://www.pnas.org/content/115/44/E10397 written about here https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/jan/15/insect-collapse-we-are-destroying-our-life-support-systems

And here’s our own UK butterfly monitoring scheme results http://www.ukbms.org/ again, not sure what they get out of falsifying data (perhaps they’ve collected all the missing butterflies and are holding them hostage somewhere?) 

The average number of butterflies seen by participants in the count was the lowest ever, with once-common garden butterflies such as the small tortoiseshell dropping by 47% compared to last year and the peacock falling by 42%. The peacock is a particular concern: it has now dropped from an average of 3.6 individuals per count in 2013 to just 0.5 per count in 2016, a six-fold decrease over three years.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/oct/10/record-low-number-of-uk-butterflies-a-shock-and-a-mystery

As with climate change it’s perfectly possible to live life without worrying about any of this. Who honestly cares, as long as our monoculture foodstocks remain abundant. (We get 80 per cent of our calories from just 12 species of crops). Who needs butterflies?

It’s much easier to believe that all the negative news about plastic and air pollution and insect collapse and freshwater supplies running out and climate change migrants is just a big conspiracy by (boogeyman Soros? the Illuminati? Jeremy Corbyn?)

There are still abundant insects in many places. When I walk through the veldt it jumps and roars with critters. They aren’t saying all insects have disappeared or even will disappear. People will still get insects on their cars because it is a big world and each place is different.

They’re saying that empically, where strong scientifically supported numbers have been analysed over a period of years, there are considerably fewer insects and that knowledge should be concerning.

Personally I prefer a world teeming with lifeforms. I prefer waking up hearing insects and birds. Concrete and car horns and engines just aren’t as pleasant. But if we require unlimited growth in a finite environment then inevitably concrete will win.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, PeanutButter said:

Personally I prefer a world teeming with lifeforms. I prefer waking up hearing insects and birds. Concrete and car horns and engines just aren’t as pleasant. But if we require unlimited growth in a finite environment then inevitably concrete will win.

Can't get in the way of economic growth and catering to ever-growing populations!

Unfortunately the "solution", because technology always is the solution for everything, will probably be something along the lines of coming up with enough agricultural technology to grow enough food without requiring the natural base, and to catalogue the DNA of everything so that theoretically they could be recreated and aren't lost for good. Then we can keep pouring the concrete to our hearts content to grow the economy, house more people, and have easier lives (more enjoyable, happier lives aren't relevant).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
17 minutes ago, Riedquat said:

Can't get in the way of economic growth and catering to ever-growing populations!

Unfortunately the "solution", because technology always is the solution for everything, will probably be something along the lines of coming up with enough agricultural technology to grow enough food without requiring the natural base, and to catalogue the DNA of everything so that theoretically they could be recreated and aren't lost for good. Then we can keep pouring the concrete to our hearts content to grow the economy, house more people, and have easier lives (more enjoyable, happier lives aren't relevant).

Agreed 100%

Our corporate masters aren’t entomologists or climatologists, they’re the people who demand everlasting growth and more and more humans as fodder for it. 

No matter that the human fodder is unhappy, no matter that we’ve become disconnected from the natural world with our artificial lights (insomnia) and our artificial foods (plastic microwave meals) and our dirty water and poisonous air. 

Everyone must live forever and everyone must generate profit. That is all.

There’s simply no profit in butterflies, thus they are worthless and must die.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Riedquat said:

Can't get in the way of economic growth and catering to ever-growing populations!

Unfortunately the "solution", because technology always is the solution for everything, will probably be something along the lines of coming up with enough agricultural technology to grow enough food without requiring the natural base, and to catalogue the DNA of everything so that theoretically they could be recreated and aren't lost for good. Then we can keep pouring the concrete to our hearts content to grow the economy, house more people, and have easier lives (more enjoyable, happier lives aren't relevant).

Yes, that's what I was thinking. Even if insects disappear we would be able to artificially pollinate plants, genetically engineer them, etc.

We are far more likely to die from societal breakdown in the next 10 - 50 years than from insects going extinct.  

I imagine the insect situation is largely due to Brexit.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Trophic cascades are powerful indirect interactions that can control entire ecosystems, occurring when a trophic level in a food web is suppressed. (wiki)

Perhaps we can live without insects. But can we live without the birds that eat them? The lizards and frogs? The bats and rodents and fish? 

Can we do without trout in the rivers and pheasants in the fields? What will England look like when these creatures diminish, unnoticed? 

We will be proud of ourselves?

Edited by PeanutButter

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, PeanutButter said:

Agreed 100%

Our corporate masters aren’t entomologists or climatologists, they’re the people who demand everlasting growth and more and more humans as fodder for it. 

No matter that the human fodder is unhappy, no matter that we’ve become disconnected from the natural world with our artificial lights (insomnia) and our artificial foods (plastic microwave meals) and our dirty water and poisonous air. 

Everyone must live forever and everyone must generate profit. That is all.

There’s simply no profit in butterflies, thus they are worthless and must die.

Well dirty water and poisonous air don't help you live forever, but medical advances will sort that out (to be honest I sometimes prefer the dirt to the alternatives).

But you can't measure happiness. As I've been told often enough on the Brexit thread things like that are intangible and sentimental so can't be counted against the cold, hard facts of economic numbers.

The people who are small minded and unimaginative enough to think that are the greatest threat we face.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, PeanutButter said:

They’re saying that empically, where strong scientifically supported numbers have been analysed over a period of years, there are considerably fewer insects and that knowledge should be concerning.

In some places, for reasons that are far from clear.

Yet that magically becomes 'OMG, all the insects will soon be gone. WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE! Unless weo give more power to the government! For the childrun!'

This may well turn out to be a valid concern. But constant scare-mongering just burns people out and they stop caring about the next horror story.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
13 hours ago, Ghostly said:

We are far more likely to die from societal breakdown in the next 10 - 50 years than from insects going extinct.

Bingo. The people pushing the 'OMG ALL THE INSECTS ARE DYING!' are using it as a justification to push policies that will cause social breakdown over the next couple of decades.

They're the real threat we should be scared of. But it's probably far too late to do anything about it other than to decentralize and bunker down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, MarkG said:

In some places, for reasons that are far from clear.

Yet that magically becomes 'OMG, all the insects will soon be gone. WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE! Unless weo give more power to the government! For the childrun!'

This may well turn out to be a valid concern. But constant scare-mongering just burns people out and they stop caring about the next horror story.

I’m sorry you feel constantly scared :)  

I will ask the insect people to turn down their research. Or perhaps it’s the media reporting you don’t like.

Seriously though, do you not find reacting this way to the mildest form of negative information (this insect research has only emerged into public consciousness in the last 2 years) somewhat tiring? 

And what other theories do you have for insects disappearing? I’m keen to hear what basis you have for disbelieving the science. Is it purely emotion that drives your response or have you done research?

Sorry for all the questions but I do find this sort of response (a very common one) fascinating.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 16/02/2019 at 11:12, PeanutButter said:

I’m sorry you feel constantly scared :)  

I will ask the insect people to turn down their research. Or perhaps it’s the media reporting you don’t like.

Seriously though, do you not find reacting this way to the mildest form of negative information (this insect research has only emerged into public consciousness in the last 2 years) somewhat tiring? 

And what other theories do you have for insects disappearing? I’m keen to hear what basis you have for disbelieving the science. Is it purely emotion that drives your response or have you done research?

Sorry for all the questions but I do find this sort of response (a very common one) fascinating.

The insect scientists' primary concern is their next research funding round. They have to sell hyperbole in order to get money. That's not their fault, it's the system. They have mortgages to pay. They haven't actually shown that all the insects are going to disappear, they've just said there's a lot less now then there used to be. And even given that, they haven't shown us a collapsed ecosystem owing to the current reduction, I believe. Not one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So ALL science requiring funding is false.

Got it.

The volunteers in Germany who don’t get paid though, how do you explain their data? What benefit would a large group of German amateurs get from falsifying data over 30 years?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The science isn't false but whatever proposals align with current political attitudes are more likely to get funding which creates a risk of imbalance in terms of which hypotheses are explored. And as mentioned earlier idiotic extrapolations leading to headlines of the "all insects gone within a century" reinforce the views of those running scared and create additional scepticism amongst the more level-headed, which can create a boy who cried wolf effect that leads to genuine issues being dismissed (health and safety is another one that's got its head too wedged up its backside in a similar manner, leading to one group jumping at shadows and another dismissing genuine concerns).

Edited by Riedquat

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/mar/18/england-to-run-short-of-water-within-25-years-environment-agency

Quote

 

England is set to run short of water within 25 years, the chief executive of the Environment Agency has warned.

The country is facing the ‘‘jaws of death”, Sir James Bevan said, at the point where water demand from the country’s rising population surpasses the falling supply resulting from climate change.

However, this could be avoided with ambitious action to cut people’s water use by a third and leakage from water company pipes by 50%, he says, along with big new reservoirs, more desalination plants and transfers of water across the country.

“Around 25 years from now, where those [demand and supply] lines cross is known by some as the ‘jaws of death’ – the point at which we will not have enough water to supply our needs, unless we take action to change things,” Bevan told the Guardian, before a speech on Tuesday at the Waterwiseconference in London.

“We need water wastage to be as socially unacceptable as blowing smoke in the face of a baby or throwing your plastic bags into the sea,” he said.

In the speech, Bevan says: “Water companies all identify the same thing as their biggest operating risk: climate change.” By 2040, more than half of our summers are expected to be hotter than the 2003 heatwave, he says, leading to more water shortages and potentially 50-80% less water in some rivers in the summer.

The population of the UK is expected to rise from 67 million to 75 million in 2050, increasing the demand for water. But Bevan says the average person’s daily water use of 140 litres could be cut to 100 litres in 20 years by more efficient use in homes and gardens. Currently, about a third of water is lost to leaks or wastage.

 

Tick tock. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And yet more reasons to demonstrate that population growth is a catastrophe yet that elephant in the room will still be ignored - nope, we just need to build more stuff to handle the symptoms rather than cure the disease, kick the can down the road a little further and ignore the cracked windows and dented cars that result from every badly aimed kick (probably whilst claiming the solution is investment in technology to producing stronger glass).

Anyway it won't be a problem to those who are ignoring the issue. If you bury your head in the sand you'll suffocate before you die of thirst.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • 293 Brexit, House prices and Summer 2020

    1. 1. Including the effects Brexit, where do you think average UK house prices will be relative to now in June 2020?


      • down 5% +
      • down 2.5%
      • Even
      • up 2.5%
      • up 5%



×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.