BioDev 2000 GE (Mutant) Trees Workshop

Christopher Erickson chrerick at
Sun Apr 9 06:53:52 EST 2000

Auck, where to begin.

As may know from previous posts, I am currently involved in a
eucalyptus/poplar/black locus pilot project in Ojinaga Mexico. The project
is combined wastewater treatment and land reclamation. We have also expanded
the project to include establishment of forestry coop. We have identified
6000 ha of "former agricultural land" which we plan to convert eventually
into pulp farms.

What the author of the original post fails to consider is that much of the
"former agricultural land" being considered for tree plantations has gone
fallow. While there are a variety of reasons for this, in Ojinaga the main
reason for land going fallow is salination, which occurs because of
naturally high levels of salt in the soil plus poor irrigation techniques.

Moreover, at least our project is not displacing native workers -- most of
our work is with ejidos. We put native populations back to work.

Also I should point out that tree plantations take pressure reduce
harvesting in environmentally sensitive areas such as the Sierra Madre (see
my post from last week).

For any one interested, if you email me, I will send you a copy my scholarly
article on this topic which is forthcoming in the Annuals of the Arid Lands.
This article carefully lays out the interaction among social, economic, and
forestry factors in determining the "best" solution to environmental

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