Thursday, April 05, 2007

Wicked Inconvenience: Invasive offences or Bamboo Fences

I just finished cherries and do not have the time today for an expose on bamboo. However, this little gem which I picked up from a Mid Atlantic Exotic Pest Plant Council thread quite nicely highlights the wicked problem nature of invasive species, plus the law of unintended consequences. A few months ago, I wrote about Miscanthus; there were a flurry of articles about the use of this species to generate bio-fuels. I seem to recall that one writer noted that we could generate half the state of Illinois’ electric power need if we planted ten percent of the states land acreage in Miscanthus. The story in April 9th Time Magazine is of the same ilk.

Somewhere buried in today's bamboo story, as a solution for your carbon habits, is some science, but as with all wicked problems, what we have here, are co-equal and co-evolving, wicked problems, unitary solutions for which will, have unexpected, unplanned, and unintended causal complications. I wish I had the time to to a cursory bamboo review; perhaps next time, until then, the story, and your thoughts?

26. Plant a bamboo fence
By Maryanne Murray Buechner
Article ToolsPrintEmail Bamboo makes a beautiful fence, and because it grows so quickly (as much as 1 ft. a day or more, depending on the species), it absorbs more CO2 than, say, a rosebush. Most homeowners have to restrict its growth, lest it get out of control. Do this, however, and you reduce bamboo's capacity as a carbon sink. Only large-scale plantings, which absorb CO2 faster than they release it, can favorably tip the scales. How big is your yard?

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