Friday, July 11, 2003


The other day, I read this entry over at dangerousmeta!:
santa fe new mexican: taos fire intensifies. it's burning in the taos pueblo's watershed, threatening their water supplies.
It reminded me of a 1920 article in the Journal of Forestry by Aldo Leopold, "The Forestry of the Prophets." Leopold notes: "[The prophets] understood not only the immediate destructive effects of fires, but possibly also the more far reaching effects on watersheds." (p. 72; further discussion and qualification on p. 74) He then quotes from the book of Joel:
Unto thee, O LORD, I cry. For fire has devoured the pastures of the wilderness, and flame has burned all the trees of the field. Even the wild beasts cry to thee because the water brooks are dried up, and fire has devoured the pastures of the wilderness. (Joel 1:19-20, RSV)
[Article reprinted in The River of the Mother of God and Other Essays by Aldo Leopold, ed. S. L. Flader and J. B. Callicott (Madison, Wisc.: University of Wisconsin Press, 1991): 71-77.]

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