There is a link between human health and trees, a new study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine suggests. One of the primary results found people experienced greater rates of death from heart and respiratory diseases where there was a loss of trees.
The data came from 1,296 counties in over 15 states. From the study – “This finding adds to the growing evidence that the natural environment provides major public health benefits.”
And back in 2010, researchers at the University of Rochester found spending time with nature makes people feel more alive.
I believe strongly in the results from both studies. They offer two more reasons, among many, for why we need to protect the environment – strongly protect the environment.
On the environmental front, there are two areas of good news this week:
The Environmental Protection Agency as announced BP has received a suspension from being issued new contracts with the US government. The Associated Press reports the EPA suspension has arrised due to BP’s “lack of business integrity as demonstrated by the company’s conduct with regard to the Deepwater Horizon blowout, explosion, oil spill, and response.”
AND – the AP also reports the rate of deforestation in Brazil’s Amazon rainforest has dropped to the lowest level in the past 24 years. This is really great news, but we should not be pleased until we see the deforestation stop altogether and see that trend continue into into the future.
Big Oil and Big Coal have taken to spreading some really expensive and extensive propaganda that translates to – ‘let us pollute, destroy nature and wipe out wildlife populations as we see fit, because we supply jobs.’
We need the jobs and certainly the country needs far more jobs. But why can’t our great country, at this time of fantastic technological advancements, turn more to clean jobs? Why does it have to be this false choice, where job creation is presented to the public like a hostage inside a bank robbery. (Imagery comparison intended)
The South American nation of Bolivia could soon pass a law to grant equal protection to nature and humans.
The 11 new rights for nature would include – according to a Guardian article out of the UK – “ … the right to life and to exist; the right to continue vital cycles and processes free from human alteration; the right to pure water and clean air; the right to balance; the right not to be polluted; and the right to not have cellular structure modified or genetically altered.”