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Nature Offers Solutions to Water Woes and Flood Risks


Nature Offers Solutions to Water Woes and Flood Risks

David Suzuki

When the Aztecs founded Tenochtitlán in 1325, they built it on a large island on Lake Texcoco. Its eventual 200,000-plus inhabitants relied on canals, levees, dikes, floating gardens, aqueducts and bridges for defense, transportation, flood control, drinking water and food. After the Spaniards conquered the city in 1521, they drained the lake and built Mexico City over it.


We are not always ‘on the same page’, Suzuki, but I applaud this article. I live in Ag. Saskatchewan. Folks seem to always want to drain sloughs or pump water up to knolls. A better solution would be to turn irregular [natural] areas into rectangles using various plant materials - - shrubs, flowering perennials, trees, grasses, etc. Thus guidance systems could do their thing in tractors and swathers and field sprayers [sorry Dave] -without having to turn, re jig etc.

Imagine a rural municipality going along with THAT suggestion via a by law -


A lax regulatory regime that allows developers to drain wetlands and build on flood plains has compounded Houston’s problems. The city has no zoning laws, and many wetlands and prairies—which normally absorb large amounts of water and prevent or lessen flood damage—have been drained, developed or paved over.

Raises a real question about how much Texas is entitled to be bailed for greed stupidity and corruption.


Actually, that sounds pretty crappy. Sorry.


Wetlands are like the earths kidneys. Come to think of it there is a LOT of kidney disease in the U.S. Also linked to kidney disease is fear. Easy to spot in animals that are easily frightened.


Yes, because it’s highly likely they will do the same things all over again!


An informative piece by Mr. Suzuki. It should be mandatory reading for all those in congress.

His example of the Dutch is very good.


even better, i think, that this article should be required reading for school children–even grade school–for they are the ones who will pay the biggest price for our failure to live within and respecting the laws of Nature. the laws of Nature do not change on a whim. Nature exists in a constant state of change, but the foundation or the laws never change. our congressional critters write “rules” which can change on a whim. our congress listens to big money! we the people find it difficult to catch the ear of congress. well, it’s been said that it is hard to convince someone of truth when their paycheck depends on their not believing the facts.


thank you, dr. suzuki, for a beautiful and much needed essay! just earlier this morning my neighbor and i discussed the magnificent aztec creations. i’ll have to tell becky that we’ve proved “great minds think alike!” well, . . . talk about hubris, huh?

european migrants came to this “new” but already inhabited continent in search of resources dwindling in the “old” world. several years ago we had a common dreamer, don lutz, a writer who suggested that as our species expanded and settled into the harsher and colder northern areas, humans began to see Nature as a threat to survival. thus we of euro-decent live in a convoluted “civilization” that sees Nature as an enemy to pave over and wall out.

"Conquering" nature has long been the western way. Our hubris, and often our religious ideologies, have led us to believe we are above nature and have a right to subdue and control it. We let our technical abilities get ahead of our wisdom. We're learning now that working with nature—understanding that we are part of it—is more cost-effective and efficient in the long run.
believe it or not, i once joined "the environmental site" which i thought should be a perfect fit for 'Nature's child*'--as my moniker on other sites states--then one day a member suggested a needed technological fix for the problems we face. i responded to her that we should not be to quick with a deus ex technico, but work with Nature. well, that went over like a lead balloon. the next day i returned to the site and found i'd been blocked. :face_with_raised_eyebrow:

*whether we know it or not, every one of us and the horse we rode in on is Nature’s child!


I think it was the very wise Upton Sinclair who said that. His writings of a hundred years ago are very relevant to our time.


thanks, i keep several upton sinclair quotes on file. you’re correct, after all only Truth can stand the test of time. what did i write that should have been attributed to upton? gee, i didn’t mean to plagiarise.


oh, this one! i thought you replied to my other post.