Alt-Epistemology: Remarkable “assisted migration” of clones from ancient redwoods brings up a host of questions

One of the ever-present disputes in permaculture is whether or not “invasive species” are to be avoided or eradicated. Just the very name “invasive,” of course, brands them as “bad”; on the other hand, as Peter Bane, my permaculture teacher, put it, “plants move.” If they don’t move suddenly, introduced by wind, fire, water, birds, animals, or humans, either inadvertently or by design, they do move gradually, depending on all sorts of factors, including climate change. And when they do (seem to) “suddenly” appear in a new environment, humans tend to lament that they “take over” and “crowd out” species we call “native,” — at least for a while, even for decades, until the ecosystem naturally rebalances itself.

Clearly, the Angel Ancient Tree Archive comes down on one side of this dispute, not just by re-introducing ancient redwoods to where they were before, but introducing them to new areas in “assisted migration.”

There are other assumptions buried in this audacious, thought-provoking project, and who knows really, whether or not they are TRUE. Here are two assumptions that I find both provocative AND questionable:

  1. The climate is warming. Google “climate warming exopermaculture” and you will come upon a host of discussions that address this question — plus the political and geo-political agendas that may be driving humans to “beLIEve” in it. Here’s an example.

Is the Global Climate Changing, and If So, How? Meanwhile: Welcome to “Precarity”

Some people, like Clif High, think the climate is about to enter a massive cooling period, indeed a new mini Ice Age. True? I have no idea; but notice that this assumption is the exact opposite of the much more common “climate warming” mantra of Guy McPherson, who, by the way, Carol Rosin has just interviewed again “

Google “Guy McPherson “exopermaculture” and you will find many articles addressing Guy’s “take” on the future.

There’s a reason Guy is called “Mr. Doomer”! On the other hand, Clif High’s “take” on the future might have equally drastic repercussions for the survival of the human race.

BTW: There are variations on the above assumption. For example, some people say that human industrial activity is not the primary driver for climate warming, because the whole solar system is warming. True? Again, I have no idea.

  2. “Too much” carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is bad

I’m sure you’ve seen the 360° number bandied about as the “safe” number of parts per million for CO2 in the atmosphere. Here’s a screenshot:

But here’s an article that directly contradicts this assumption:

CO2 myth exposed: Why we need more carbon dioxide to grow food and forests

TRUE? Again, I have no idea. My only purpose here is to expose commonly held assumptions we make that not only drive our beLIEfs, but that also drive action, including this amazingly farseeing project to regrow, and introduce redwood forests on planet Earth.

P.S. What I do very much love about the redwoods project is that it is thinking in Native American terms, hoping to be looking after the “7th generation” of our children’s children. That overall vision in itself, is laudable, whether or not the climate is really cooling, or really warming, or whether or not there can be “too much” carbon dioxide in the air.

Please note: I’m not dissing the project, I’m just looking at this entire question from an alt-epistemological point of view, aiming to help us see that everything we think, no matter how obviously “true” it seems at the time, is based on assumptions that, if we go back far enough, cannot be proven, but “rest on nothing.” Which is why it’s best to keep our minds open to further possibilities.

Arborists Are Bringing the Dinosaur of Trees Back to Life



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