Holiday Wishes for the Environment: By Don Torino

Cardinal photo courtesy of Joseph E Koscielny

Cardinal photo courtesy of Joseph E Koscielny

Someone once said that Optimism is the Heart of Conservation, for everyone that works tirelessly to replant the forest, fight to turn back climate change and protect an endangered species needs to have the hope and trust that one day , they will make the earth a better place . So since it is the Holiday season and we could all use a wish or two to come true to help the environment I asked some good folks what their Holiday wishes would be for the environment.

Judith Joan Sullivan of The Ramapough Conservancy said “I am wishing the Ramapo forest would call more humans to walk under the shade of its leaves, in the cool waters of its clear streams, and with the companionship of its bears, coyotes, salamanders and snakes. There are also thousands of Native Americans buried in the mountains who are anxious to meet and protect you. Walking in the forest brings good fortune. Try it and you will see. Great idea Judith!

Marie Longo, Education director for Bergen County Audubon Society also was kind enough to share her holiday wishes My holiday wish is that everyone take some time to get outdoors and enjoy the beauty and serenity that nature has to offer. If possible, make it a family event so that the entire family can participate and share the experience. If I’m not being too greedy, I also wish that Alice and Al (The Ridgefield Park Eagles) have another successful breeding season and raise 3 more chicks!

My friend Leslie Kruegel had some worthy wishes alsoI wish that humans could be more caring for all the other creatures that live on earth with us, and not see them as annoyances and dangers. I wish we could try to solve issues in nonviolent ways instead of shooting bears and addling eggs of Canada geese. The animals were here before us. We should enjoy the beauty and richness that they offer to all of us and appreciate the diversity instead of trying to destroy it. I wish for more kindness and willingness to co-exist with the

natural world.

George Reskakis, head “Weed Warrior” from Teaneck Creek Conservancy had some well thought wishes. “With all the divisiveness in the world, my holiday wish is for us all to stop for a moment and give thanks to air and water. It should be the one thing we can all agree on, because without it we will all cease to exist! So it does not matter what race , religion or political party you are, we MUST support the environment.” Well said my friend

Lori Charkey , director of Bergen Save the Watershed Action Network (SWAN) has some important wishes for the new year. “I have a simple holiday wish for 2015 to give 2016 a gift of healthier soil, more plentiful pollinators, and less sediment-filled streams: leave some leaves in your yard and garden this fall – mulch mow them into your lawn as free fertilizer, rake them onto your perennial beds as bedding for future butterflies, and rake them out of your nearby storm drains to keep our waterways clearer.”

And finally friend Pat Cacioppo told me “I pray that our Nation’s symbol, the Bald Eagle, will fly abundantly in every state and that wolves will roam freely again across our land with no persecution .

My holiday wish for this year would that everyone save a place for nature, whether in your backyard or in your heart .My thanks to everyone for sharing their holiday wishes . If you have some special holiday wishes for the environment let me know. Greatauk4@gmail.com

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