Ecology is…

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What are our forests really made of? From the air, ecologist Greg Asner uses a spectrometer and high-powered lasers to map nature in meticulous kaleidoscopic 3D detail — what he calls “a very high-tech accounting system” of carbon. In this fascinating talk, Asner gives a clear message: To save our ecosystems, we need more data, gathered in new ways.

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40 thoughts on “Ecology is…”

  1. Wrong word, yeah, but … GREAT JOB. The style of the video is perfect–the style of animation, the music, everything. Really nice job, guys.

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  2. Very well done presentation. Ecology should not be considered as a hermetic science, but more like a way of living. Green lifestyle…

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  3. (at)FaustSketcher Ecology was originally coined by Ernst Haeckel and defined in the way that Darwin and others before him referred to the polis and economy of nature. My previous post paraphrased definition of Haeckel's from a classical ecology textbook. Your argument that we understood what he meant with the video is false, because it is replicating the error of misunderstanding. Ecology is very important and so are definitions. The video is nice, but it is environmentalism.

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  4. (at)FaustSketcher

    "By ecology we mean the body of knowledge concerning the economy of nature–the investigation of the total relations of the animal both to its organic and to its organic environment; including, above all, its friendly and inimical relations with those animals and plants with which it comes directly or indirectly into contact–in a word, ecology is the study of all those complex relations referred to by Darwin as the conditions of the struggle for existence."

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  5. (at)FaustSketcher Actually, ecology is a complex science and it is more than a science. It is a science in the sense that scientists study the relations of life to the abiotic and biotic conditions that surround them. Is is also about the actual events that are taking place on the planet beyond the study. I am very skeptical of your claim that "we all understood". Most people score very low on their scientific understanding of things, let alone ecology. This video is not about ecology.

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  6. i am a junior in high school and am in AP classes, i have no idea what i want to major in, in college but i enjoy nature and wildlife and i am looking into becoming and ecologist but i am still not sure

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  7. Is a cultural thing,, in the states is a hip thing to do just to be cool but in other countries is part of life… To respect our planet.

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  8. (at)Chompyt We are if we don't find a way to "fix" our predicaments, it's either that or get off this damned rock.

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  9. (at)OBSysteme Its 1. the study of organisms to eachother and the environment or 2. the study of the relationship to the environment. Ecology is not the environmentally friendly actions that he is describing in the video. What he's describing is stewardship of the Earth.

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  10. in min 9:47, when he mentions illegal mining he says "dont worry, we are working with the authorities to deal with this and many other problems" … dont worry?? i guess all humans should worry about this, otherwise forest destruction will continue! i dont believe that the authorities make much! i made my PhD with the topic of intentional fires in Amazon rain forest and the authorities used to say, we have it now under control.. however, the satellite images showed the oposite, Brazilian Amazon has more fires now than ever and the size of the fires are bigger than before. If we keep trusting local authorities our Amazon rain forest will soon disapear, so… please let us worry about it and think of strategies to stop illegal fires and mining.

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  11. I know you hate Farmers for their deplition of ground water but do you know how much the farm backs down on killing old oaks.

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  12. as a geographer and recent student,I would love to see this technology in orbit and it be available to us. The possibility of projects on the local scale would be endless and bring great results I am sure of it! 

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  13. There is an easy answer. Its called not killing elephants but neutering a lot of them when populations get to big. That would be an easier answer it's not perfect. But this doesn't give an excuse to kill elephants. 

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  14. Greg,
    Congratulations on TEDtalking your work. From lions and elephants to 3D mapping the carbon stock of vast regions of the planet, your talk is fascinating and brings the value of science into context for all. Your point about the fundamental flaw of designing conservation plans without specific geographically explicit data makes total sense. I share your vision of getting the Carnegie Airborne Observatory's imaging spectrometer and lasers into orbit. Good luck on your work.

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  15. instead of fucking with developing countries, go buy land in europe and north america and plant trees, replacing farms and cities. these climate change morons just want the poor countries to bear the costs of the shit the rich did (and do), trashing the planet for centuries.

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  16. Amazing new views of the planet's rainforests, showing both how climate change is affecting them and their inhabitants, and how deforestation is causing climate change.  Shame he felt the need to encourage everyone watching his talk to fly to the Amazon and look at it from a boat rather than explore his amazing maps on Google Earth 🙁  Amazing how even scientists in this field don't make the link between the carbon pollution we each create and climate change!

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  17. A very interesting video, highlighting a technique with a great potential as a tool for understanding.  The only thing that made me wince was the idea that wildlife should centred on "nature reserves".  Whilst I get that this is a short-term "bank" for biodiversity, there are still those stubborn island bio-geographic issues that mean sooner or later we have to look at biodiversity in the wider landscape.  Ultimately, we need to look closely at our own human numbers, that threaten to overwhelm even the nature reserve areas that we do designate.  For example, in the UK, such designated areas are under threat from a government that sees them as getting in the way of economic recovery.  There are a plethora of "initiatives" under way that aim to loosen their protection.

    Many UK bird species are not habitat-specific, and therefore are not potentially nature reserve specific.  They rely on the wider landscape. Consequently such birds are often in decline, especially if they are specialists in that wider landscape.  The decline in arable landscape bird species here, is steep and dramatic.

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  18. We can hopefully infertile using inject able solution for sterilization, if some animal is overpopulated like elephant which might have adverse effect on the ecosystem. But at this moment human overpopulation is the concern. This beast is very difficult to control.

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  19. Greetings. Recently, TED decided to remove a video in which the wonderful Graham Hancock shared some highly valuable information. Regardless of who you are – I urge you to become familiar with this video (which has been reuploaded by independents). TED's very act of removing this video is a precise reflection of the war on consciousness that Graham has been and will continue to speak about. That is all.

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  20. He totally had me until he started to jabber about global warming and carbon dioxide. It's a shame such bright and talented people have to say such stupid things in order to get their research funded.

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  21. we all have it backwards; we (are forced to) manage the small remaining wilderness areas for biodiversity – instead of managing everything else for biodiversity.

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