I live in the middle of the Shenandoah Valley. It was known by the Indians as the Daughter of the Stars. Growing up in DC, I found tremendous tranquility in these wooded mountains. As a teenager the George Washington (GW) forest became a favorite place to recharge myself.
I find such peace when I'm in a wooded area. Also I reside in the center of Shenandoah County, Virginia. Here, state and national forests comprise 26 percent of its 512 square miles. I have the fortune of backing the George Washington National Forest outside Edinburg, Virginia.
Also located in my home town is Camp Roosevelt. This was a major New Deal effort where the first Civilian Conservation Corps camp began. Over 2 million men were employed and planted almost three billion trees revitalizing our 1930's American depression.
Today I have four 100 year old oaks on my land. Never in my 30 years living in the woods have more trees have died then this year. Ash, oak, hemlock, pine and other species lost on my 5 acres.
So too has the rest of the world's forest been decimated either by disease, fires, development and other factors.
Unfortunately this deforestation comes at a critical time since trees are allies battling climate change.
For example the Australian fires have destroyed twice the size of Belgium or six more times than California in 2018.
One journalist just noted the following prophecy from a famous children's author*
The Lorax, Dr. Seuss’s Environmental Advocate
The story starts with a little boy walking into an uninhabitable-looking, ashen landscape. Amid the dead trees, the little boy asks: What ever happened to this creature called The Lorax? A grumpy curmudgeon of a thing, called the “Once-ler,” appears to explain the story.
“Way back in the days when the grass was still green
And the pond was still wet
And the clouds were still clean…
And I first saw the trees!
The Truffula Trees
The bright-colored tufts of the Truffula Trees!
Mile after mile in the fresh morning breeze.”
When the Once-ler, a business-man, first arrived, he saw the business opportunity hiding inside the lush land. He begins to cut down the trees to build his business.
The Lorax then emerges, “I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.”
And thus the battle begins between the Lorax, who is fighting to save the land and the trees, and the Once-ler, who is looking to turn a profit on what he sees as an unprecedented business opportunity amid the Truffula trees.
Hopefully may we champion like the Lorax planting new seeds of prosperity. Care and plant more trees-insure life, BE A LORAX!
* Climate Change
Dumbing It Down To Smarten Up: Dr. Seuss On Stephanie Denning Senior Contributor Forbes Magazine January 4th 2020