Citizens who observe nature feel more connected to it, and therefore treat nature with more respect, interest, and may even devote part of their life to its protection. Martha Carlson, a long time maple farmer and former science teacher, is helping to make that connection in her New Hampshire community. With the help of sap collecting students, Martha has discovered a correlation between climate change and the declining sweetness of pure maple syrup. Her team of young researchers go outside and get their hands dirty (well, sticky) to uncover the patterns and changes happening to the trees in their backyards.
The effects of a declining sugar maple population are great. People will still want syrup so manufacturers will continue to add artificial flavor and sweetener to produce a product that still tastes good. Furthermore, small business owners and communities will have the hardest time protecting themselves from climate change and will be the first to go under. The threatened trees in New Hampshire support a multi-million dollar syrup and tourism industry. And that’s just the tip of the melting iceberg. So what can we do? Get kids in nature! Teach your community ways to make slight behavior changes that can make a big collective difference.
Watch Martha’s amazing story in this video and read more at ecopreneurist.