Letter to the Editor
Published 11:27 am Wednesday, July 23, 2008
World is in fast ‘urban desert’
Destruction of our natural world: Whales and sharks are being slaughtered to the point of only 10 percent remaining of their once teeming populations; song birds are disappearing in alarming numbers due to indiscriminate use of pesticides; aerial shooting of wolves by the state of Alaska and the delisting of wolves on the endangered species list in the western states and baby seal pups being clubbed to death for their fur in Canada.
All of the above is disturbing as we spend about $300 billion on the War in Iraq. This will come closer to home on a small piece of the planet here in Atmore: that is the asphalt “heat islands” in our strip malls and other recent commercial developments. Do an experiment: park in the parking lot of Fred’s around 3 p.m. and feel the unbearable heat as you walk into the store. Then go sit under an old oak tree. The difference in the temperature is at least 15 degrees. There aren’t any trees to park under at these strip mall, so when you come back to your car it is dangerously heated up to more than 100 degrees.
Does this experiment tell you something about the value of shade trees and their esthetics; that they would entice customers of “big box stores” and “little box store” to shop there? Yet with Hurricane Ivan and other manmade destruction, we are fast becoming an “urban desert.”
We as a “tree city” don’t even have a tree ordinance that would help remedy this situation! Without our natural resources not amount of “economic progress” will add to our health and comfort.
Robert W. Mays