Friday, November 28, 2008

Fuel a difficult subject

Bindu recently made comments about the tree stump.

My love of trees is obvious however I cannot be a hypocrite about the trees which are felled.

Trees in Fougeres town.

We use wood as our main source of heating. Many chestnut trees here need to be destroyed because there is a disease spreading through Europe. Wood is also now seen as a green fuel. It is all about thoughful management and replacement.

I often read about forest management, and experts think that old decaying trees can in fact damage the environment. So management and tree felling can be a good thing.

Healthy Chestnut tree in Fougeres town

What about nuclear power?. Thats a tricky one too, it is one of the reasons that electricity in France is a lot cheaper than in the UK, there have been problems this year, link here.

What I dont understand is why dont new Government buildings have solar panels, why dont they install solar panels on all new sports stadiums? Governments should be setting an example.

I am happy to use wood as a fuel. There is a small coppice of silver birch trees in the village which is abviously being grown as fuel for use in the future.

Its very cold here in Brittany at the moment and we only have heating downstairs in our small kitchen/ living room.

What is better wooden furniture or plastic?......Nuclear fuel or wood? Paper bags or plastic?

I think that we can all try and do our bit for the planet, maybe everyone should plant a tree before they die.

What do you think?

Treehugger has some interesting topics here.

More information here.

Julia Hailes Blog here.

I dont agree with everything in Julia Hailes blog, but most of it is a worthwile read, anyway it is food for thought.


French Fancy said...

We use oil for our heating had a new chauffage put in a couple of years ago. I'd love to get a wood-burning stove though for our main room, but it was a choice between turning a wall into a cinema screen for our projector or getting a wood-burner - we chose the movie option.

I agree about the lack of solar panels on new buildings showing a good opportunity missed.

French Fancy said...

Sorry - I forgot to say how much I like that first picture of the avenue of trees. Well - of course it goes without saying - I love all your pictures but some seem to speak more to me than others.

bindu said...

These are very interesting thoughts ... I'm taking a class in environmental sociology this semester, and we are reading a lot about environmental decisions and global warming. My opinion is that forest management is necessary and inevitable in today's world, but we need to examine and apply different rules to different forests. New forests do absorb more Co2 than old forests. But we cannot generalize that new forests are better. Many species live only in old growth forests, and need the varied ecosystem that exists in old growth forests. We were reading about Easter Island, where the direct reason for the collapse of that society was deforestation. As long as we understand the needs of other species than ourselves, and manage the forests so all of us (humans and other creatures) benefit, we will be ok. Fuel questions - nuclear fuel ... I need to read more, solar panels must be compulsory in new buildings ... but it is all a question of scale. People consume SO MUCH more than they really need to!!! If we all reduce our needs and consumption, the planet can support that. I can go on and on ... this is my favourite topic that I like to rant about! :)

bindu said...

Blu - I should also tell you the context of my comment on your previous post. I'm reading this book Collapse by Jared Diamond. It's excellent, and looks at the reasons why past societies collapsed, and why some societies succeeded. It also goes into deforestation and things like that. I was reading the chapter on indiscriminate logging by companies that lease land and just try to get the max benefit and leave asap. That's what I thought of when I saw your picture. There should be laws against that!

Blu said...

great to read your comments I think that we are batting on the same side. I feel very uncomfortable with the throw out and buy new society that we live in today, so having very little money makes me greener than some rich people! We have cut back so much now I have to draw the line and say there is nothing else to switch off, well not till I go to bed..night night..

French Fancy said...

I've turned into my dad who used to go round turning off unnecessary lights.