Plan B: How to Prepare for Our Changing World

people_Indigenous girl, Bangladesh.
Indigenous girl, Bangladesh. Biplob Rahman-BD, CC BY-SA 4.0/ Wikimedia Commons. Accessed 18 June 2021.

I must confess I think we are in for a long, tough road ahead. I believe many if not most of us will need certain skills and knowledge to survive and help our (new) communities survive.

Intense heat, drought, and wildfires plague the western areas of the continent. Powerful rain and tropical storms increase in number and intensity. We aren’t waiting for the Earth to react to excessive carbon in the atmosphere. She is doing it now. The intense heat, droughts, wildfires, and powerful rainstorms are the symptoms of the malady of an atmosphere overloaded with carbon.

So, what do we do now? What is Plan B? Each of us needs a Plan B. If you don’t have a plan, I offer some suggestions.

The_Life_of_Indigenous_People’s This is the life of the indigenous people in Kampung Aman Damai, Royal Belum, Perak. Faris Azmi, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons. Accessed 18 June 2021.

Sustainable indigenous management of the land works. Not all ancient or non-western cultures had land management systems create abundance. But many indigenous and traditional cultures have ways of creating ecosystem abundance. Many are willing to share their knowledge on YouTube. Learn what are the indigenous environmental justices issues and homeland relationships.

What the indigenous and traditional ways of living created were human societies where humans were keystone species. A keystone species is “a species on which other species in an ecosystem largely depend, such that if it were removed the ecosystem would change drastically.” I discussed that some in the scientific community’s acknowledgement of the success of indigenous land management practices in the previous post, Biodiversity, Indigenous Peoples, and the Future.

The indigenous land management methods included deep knowledge of the land and how it works, controlled burning, selective harvesting, encouraging plant and animal abundance, hunting, and fishing only in non-breeding seasons, native plant plantings, forest gardens, human seasonal migrations (nomadic lifestyles), and sacred histories and sacred places.

Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus). Swallowtail butterfly family. Photo by Donna L. Long. Eastern Tiger Swallowtail (Papilio glaucus). Swallowtail butterfly family. Photo by Donna L. Long.

What to Do Now for Plan B

What can we do right now, right where we are? Where do we start? You start where indigenous and traditional peoples started, with deep knowledge of the land. Know the land where you live. Know its shapes and terrain. Know its weather and climate.

If you are indigenous or come from a traditional culture, learn about your homeland. Learn the ways and histories of your peoples. Here is a video about reconnecting with your indigenous roots. 



About Philadelphia and Its Ecosystems


Impoundment pond at John Heinz NWR at Tinicum in South Philadelphia, PA. Impoundment pond at John Heinz NWR at Tinicum in South Philadelphia, PA.

Know the waterways, and where to find water. Know how to predict rain by watching the pattern of the clouds. Know the seasons of the stars. What stars are always in the sky, the circumpolar stars. Here on Turtle Island (North America) the disappearance in the spring of the Pleiades star constellation signalled the time for planting and the appearance at the end of the agricultural season. We can see the Pleiades in the night sky from October to April.


Smoky Mounatins National Park and Blue Ridge Parkway, Cherokee, NC, Smoky Mountains National Park and Blue Ridge Parkway,

Choose a stationary marker, like a mountain and keep a record where the sun rises on the solstices and equinoxes. Include the seasonal movements of the Pleiades. Keep a seasonal round.

How about making a seasonal round of the food you forage? Include invasive plants because they may be around for a long time.

Sean_Sherman_foraging_Wild_Ramps Chef Sean Sherman, Oglala Lakota, foraging wild ramps. DThompson1313, CC BY-SA 4.0 <;, via Wikimedia Commons. Accessed 18 June 2021.

Learn how to harvest foraged plants sustainably. Selectively harvest the plants you eat and use. Learn to spread the seeds of useful plants. Make sure there are plants for animals and pollinators to eat. Include pollinator plants around your garden and land. This supports abundance for all the living beings in the land.

Shadbush berries from my Shadbush Tree. Birds are attracted to the sweet fruit. Shadbush berries from my Shadbush Tree. Birds are attracted to the sweet fruit.

Think how useful the above knowledge would be to a new community or your family, as things change. We have to make significant changes to the current industrial life. The slight changes that people are making is not enough.

I read an article written by a scientist the other week about planting trees and carbon uptake. The commentary by Bonnie Waring is titled, There aren’t enough trees in the world to offset society’s carbon emissions – and there never will beIt made me think long and hard about the future, my future.

Planet Earth - Home Home.

Even if by some miracle, climate change ceases and Earth inhabitants are no longer in danger, we still will need to change our ways. Even if we found a way to suck all the excess carbon out of the atmosphere heavy use of chemicals, large number of humans concentrated in small areas, and more have to stop. 

Can we really plant enough trees and change to electric cars, while still creating massive amounts of trash, emptying the aquifers, diverting water from rivers, over-harvesting, leaving space junk, and on and on and on?

We are destroying the Earth’s ecosystems in so many ways. Perhaps a massive reset will need to happen.

As situations grow more intense, now is the time for calm and measured action. For deep thinking and planning. And Plan B. 

More Related Posts

Disconnection from the Earth: The Biggest Con

We Are Made for Darkness

Spiraling Ostrich Ferns and the Road of Life 

Space: No Longer an Option?


Related Articles on the Internet

There Aren’t Enough Trees in the World to Offset Society’s Carbon Emissions and There Never Will Be by Bonnie Waring


What is Biodiversity?


Ancient Indigenous Forest Gardens Promote a Healthy Ecosystem,



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