Exploring Trans-boundary Ecosystem Alternatives

CEC member Susan Lisa Toch reflects on a recent study trip to assess community-based collaboration for the Inside Passage of United States and Canadian waterways. She floated glacial-fed rivers loaded with eagles; kayaked into riparian wetlands; witnessed bird, bear and wolf gatherings; and collected Red Ribbon seaweed with Native American elders.

Baker Photo: Susan Toch

Oil Spills or Earthquakes: Exploring Trans-boundary Ecosystem Alternatives
By Susan Lisa Toch, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.A

A community-based initiative

What does an Inside Passage Alaska State Ferry voyage have to do with the headwaters of the Yangtze River and the surrounding Tibetan/Chinese plateaus? Or a deadly Refinery explosion in the US Puget Sound after cited plant hazards remained unfixed, with the tragic Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico? Coinciding dates seem uncanny; the sinking Oil Rig on April 22 coinciding with Earth Day, and the devastating March Tsunami so close to World Water Day.

With mounting human and environmental tolls in the wake of Asian disasters, and the unknown nuclear risks now facing so many, we need to ask again—could these devastating events have been prevented—are these disastrous consequences truly necessary for the human/environment interactions that we all share?

Amidst this demonstrated global imbalance from earthquakes and oil spills to financial crises in the Spring of 2010, a leap of faith embarked us on a journey to discover alternatives in a systems approach towards some stability. One focus explored opportunities for collaborative community and ecosystembased solutions. Read the full story >>

Dr. Toch will soon be contributing to the Geneva Disaster Prevention meetings along with other IUCN colleagues.  For more information about these and other global ecosystem-based alternatives visit www.anaturalresource.com and www.watertodrink.org.


Related links

IUCN Water Programme >>

World Water Day 2009 (transboundary waters) >>

For more information, contact:

Susan Lisa Toch, Ph.D., M.P.H., M.A

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