The aquascaping hobby vs loving nature

dw1305

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Hi all,
It's not as if any of us are clubbing seal pubs to death with the dismembered limbs of orphan children,
If it isn't copyrighted? I'm going to use that one in the future.
Planted tanks are a good thing, so please be at peace with yourselves and enjoy the hobby..
I think that as well.
I'm fairly certain that the pressurized, bottled CO2 isn't athmospheric. Probably a byproduct from producing ammonia from natural gas, in fact
It is a by-product of ammonia production.
If you are reading this from the Netherlands or almost anywhere in Europe then be aware that in the UK many of the things you treat as common place and comon sense are unusual here.
That is a masterpiece of under-statement.

We swap our house (and have "work aways"), and have had many visitors from Denmark, Italy, Sweden, Germany, Netherlands etc. and some things take a bit of explaining, like why it could cost you several hundred pounds to go London on the train, and that if you drive into Bath you are likely to accumulate quite a lot of traffic offence fines due to the less than transparent nature of the road markings and signage.

I'm not going to mention BREXIT, but if you try and explain the rationale and background for it it often leads to incredulous laughter pretty quickly.

cheers Darrel
 

tam

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I think it's worth thinking about - a lot of things don't make a big difference in the grand scheme of things but can add up when a lot of people do them. Take the bucephalandra ... it's my, very rough, understanding that there was a sudden excitement over that in the hobby and it lead to some unsustainable/illegal collecting practices. We can also blame the hobby for some invasive plant and fish species being released into ecosystems that they shouldn't be in.

There is potential for good too - like money that supports eccosystem protection or breeding to preserve endangered species - even just development of knowledge generally.

Never hurts to think is there a better way to do what I'm doing? The bit I struggle with is working out what is the better way as often there is a lack of information available for making decisions. Where is the fish in a shop from, is the wild or farm bred better? Were these plants grown using pesticides that were then run off into a stream? Are botanicals collected in a sustainable way?
 

Parablennius

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For a long time ( decades actually) I've followed this. "Think globally, act locally" I can't do anything about what other countries do. What is the point of green actions, taxation etc . It's the same air, it's the same sea wherever on the globe you are! I planted Hawthorne trees, established a fish-free pond in my amphibian sanctuary and a pond must be one of the most productive additions to any garden. Look at the shocking state of amphibians worldwide, talk about an indicator! Doesn't just work for amphibians though, flying insects that need water are big benefactors, hedgehogs drink from it, native marginals grow in it. We were recyclers long before it became the "in thing". Personally, I'm happy that I do as much I can to minimise my impact on the planet but, you can be sure that when my home becomes someone elses property, the pond will likely be filled in and the sanctuary levelled and paved!
 

mort

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Whilst I completely agree that we all need a global conscience and that we all need to do everything we can, I would argue that most of us aren't the ones that need to listen. The fact we love nature enough to have a small part of it in our homes mean we appreciate it enough to care, it's the ones that don't who need the lesson.

I also think you need some kind of boundaries. Those that worry about running co2 on their tanks, do they still enjoy a nice bubbly beer, champagne or soft drink, if so then it's very blurry lines. We need enough space to enjoy life a little without worrying.

At the end of the day a lot of the problem is we have been conned, buy diesel cars, yes everything in your recycling bin is being recycled, wind farms are very efficient. I'm not trying to pass the blame onto others, yes our impact may be negligible but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try to help, but it's the people at the top who are the biggest problem and they are the ones who drive opinion.
 

Tim Harrison

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I just follow the dictum that the unexamined life is not worth living or to rephrase this in the era of climate change if we don't examine our lives and change them they won't be worth living.
I guess that depends on the level of Socratic scrutiny you're contemplating. I think most folk are too busy trying to survive in a rapidly changing and increasingly chaotic world, especially in developing nations, to contemplate that maxim at any other level than a superficial one, regardless of what it pertains to. Does that make their lives any less worth living ?
If, however, we could make micro changes to our individual actions then collectively this can make an impact.
But this ain't going to happen any time soon, in fact the worlds population is scrambling for an even larger share of the Earth's resources to improve the quality of life and meet the needs of increasingly extravagant lifestyle aspirations. Even if it were to happen, this fixation with anthropogenic global warming is a massive distraction from the main event...population growth. Trying to stop global warming without tackling this first is kind of like King Canute trying to turn back the tide.

In that context at least, whether a bunch of niche hobbyist use ADA AS or dirt as a substrate, or whether they use eutrophic fertz dosing or the Duck Weed index, or whether or not they decide to inject CO2, ain't really going to make that much difference.
 

Parablennius

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As an addendum to my last post, do what you can as an individual. Imagine if every other house on your street had a pond? Happy days. Over a period I e-mailed a very well known bread producer asking if the "vegetable oil" they listed as an ingredient was in fact, palm oil. No response. I sent a second, still no response. Months down the line I checked the packaging again which now listed "sustainable palm oil". I made the point in my last e-mail to the respondant that it's only sustainable after the forests have been cleared! End of conversation. Why can they not use UK produced rapeseed oil?
 

Onoma1

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I guess that depends on the level of Socratic scrutiny you're contemplating. I think most folk are too busy trying to survive in a rapidly changing and increasingly chaotic world, especially in developing nations, to contemplate that maxim at any other level than a superficial one, regardless of what it pertains to. Does that make their lives any less worth living ?
I probably sounded pompus, which wasn't the intention. I do, however, believe that if we have the luxury of choice we should examine our potential choices. Particularly if there is any chance at all of those choices reducing the factors that are forcing people to just to try to survive the influence of decisions we make.

But this ain't going to happen any time soon, in fact the worlds population is scrambling for an even larger share of the Earth's resources to improve the quality of life and meet the needs of increasingly extravagant lifestyle aspirations. Even if it were to happen, this fixation with anthropogenic global warming is a massive distraction from the main event...population growth. Trying to stop global warming without tackling this first is kind of like King Canute trying to turn back the tide.
Possibly, however, rather than neo-Malthusian views of population growth I hope that crisis can stimulate technological solutions. I can only hope.

Whether a bunch of niche hobbyist use ADA AS or dirt as a substrate, or whether they use eutrophic fertz dosing or the Duck Weed index, or whether or not they decide to inject CO2, ain't going to make the slightest bit of difference.
Possibly not. Given the popularity of the hobby worldwide maybe a small one. We don't know. I don't not think that negates discussing and examining ideas.

Now I know how that seal pub felt ...probably need to visit a pub for a pint ( real non of thst co2 injected stuff).
 
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jsiegmund

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Wow guys. I expected a few responses but not this :) Great to see how this topic does spawn a bit of discussion and hopefully raises "awareness" (I dislike the term but don't know a better alternative).

To be clear: I'm definitely not out to judge people with what is certainly a nice hobby. I also don't care if you use CO2 or not (as said: this is a by product and you're not actually producing the stuff by dissolving it in your water). It's much more about the concept of taking and giving. Hobbies like this can be very addictive and it's easy to take. And the awareness part is about knowing what you take. Not just water and power. Frodo stones don't come from your back yard. The Tropica greenhouse is located in Denmark if I'm not mistaken. I normally don't have a clue where fish come from. And all of those AliExpress packages are not being teleported over either. So it's one thing running a tank, but there's much more stuff which is not as visible as getting some water from the tap.

Now again: I'm not saying people should not be doing this. But consider giving for whatever you're taking, and that can be done in many different forms as the reactions above already show. One might have a pond in their garden. The other donates a tree every now and then, a third doesn't travel by plane. All valuable ways of reducing your footprint. And indeed; not having 5 children running around also helps ;) For myself, I certainly try to be considerate of the way I live but at the same time I do travel to work by car every day which is about 75km back and forth. So I'm definitely not a saint here, but planning to go electric and not flying to my holiday destinations are ways that I try to give back a bit on that same area. I've also drastically limited my meat (virtually no beef and much less of the other kinds) and dairy consumption btw, which really wasn't that hard at all.

Anyways; it's cool to find that there's more like minded hobbyists out there who consider these things. I hope that by sharing and caring we can maybe spread these considerations a bit and hope that others pick up. In another thread the YouTube scapers were being discussed. It would be nice to have one of them discuss this topic for a change. As most of us in this hobby are nature lovers, it certainly doesn't hurt to give back bit does it? :)
 

akwarium

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I'm fairly certain that the pressurized, bottled CO2 isn't athmospheric. Probably a byproduct from producing ammonia from natural gas, in fact. So there's that.
yes and as byproduct from the production of beer. Which means its taken recently from the atmosphere. In both cases it is a byproduct, and using it for your aquarium wont cause any extra CO2 to be produced.
 

Fiske

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yes and as byproduct from the production of beer. Which means its taken recently from the atmosphere. In both cases it is a byproduct, and using it for your aquarium wont cause any extra CO2 to be produced.
Not gonna argue this ad nauseam, but remember last summer when major breweries all over Europe had a CO2 shortage caused by a rise in LNG prices? Breweries are CO2 users, not manufacturers.
Even a lot of bottle conditioned beer gets a bit of CO2 before sealing.

Having brewed beer myself, I doubt it would be worth it to "harvest" CO2 from fermentation to sell pressurised bottles, especially foodgrade CO2. Possible, yes, economically viable, no.

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/06/22/caused-uks-carbon-dioxide-shortage/amp/
 

mort

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A little off tangent but arguably the most environmental person in history was Genghis Khan, simply because his empire spanned so far and killed so many that areas stripped for farmland were retaken by nature.

There was a paper released in the last few weeks that showed the impact of a population crash in the US (something like 60 million - 6 million) after the arrival of he first Europeans. The article is here https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-...ate-change&link_location=live-reporting-story and it explains how even an area the size of France becoming naturalised again only has a small impact on our world.

I know it's a little doom and gloom but shows us we all need to take personal responsibility.
 

roadmaster

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Title to thread "Aquascaping vs Loving nature" are one and the same for me.
I spend many day's and evening's in nature and aquascaping ,caring for tropical fishes, are my way of bringing a little of nature inside for my own selfish pleasure.
Some serenity. for me ,cursed with tortured soul and free spirit constantly at battle with one another.
 

Oldguy

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I am at peace with my hobby.

I use approx 50/50 rainwater/tap water heated on Economy 7. I collect so much rainwater I sometimes run it into the garden (where it would have gone anyway) but at a slower release rate. My tap water comes from about 15 miles away and as never been in short supply. Waste water from water changes is discharged to the garden and drains to the same river catchment as the water from the water works water would have gone to if there was no water works. [you can't destroy water.] There are processing and distribution costs I know but I seldom fly and have modest holidays mainly at home in the garden. Car trips, I get as many destinations in as possible. A special trip is a failure of planning. Food waste does not exist in my home.

CO2 is a typically a byproduct. If you are worried about its release in fish tanks, get colas banned it will have a bigger impact.

Heat energy from my tank goes into my stone house. If there was no tank I would just have to turn the house heating up. [Hot summers are different, too early to say if they will be a feature in the UK]

Plants I give away or compost, fish die from old age and are composted. My aquascape, if you can call it that, was set up over ten years ago.

EI dosing, you don't have to hit the buffers with the amounts, but they are only ppm. I use a natural inert substrate, it should last to the end of time. House and garden plants love the nutrients (ppm) in the waste water.

If you really, really, care for the planet don't have children. If you must, then educate them, they may come up with solutions. However there are too many people.

Be positive: a gentle hobby, a nice pet you can stroke, house plants and a nice garden. These save the NHS a fortune in health benefits. Global warming or global cooling, we are in an inter glacial period. Choose your poison with care.
 

Simon Cole

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I would say that what I do has a significant impact on greenhouse gas emissions, and to some extent threatens the existence of certain species and habitats. My other hobbies have barely any impact in comparison.
I would not say that my hobby is particularly ethical. I would love to publish an article on sustainability and foot-printing, so if anybody knows of a publisher that would be interested, I would be happy to research and offer an article.
 

PARAGUAY

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You could approach Nathan Hill editor PFK magazine Simon he has a very keen interest of welfare, and all things ethical, Personally I feel overall the hobby brings more people to think of the planet and sustaining the natural world(eg a well run childs aquarium can lead to a lifelong interest in nature as he or she grows up)than not. The downsides are obviously poor regulation of fish farming for aquarium keeping , And such as dyed fish just cruel!,And sorry I know we love them but new and rare species exported from habitats that are not in danger. Just a thought could the hobby be saving habitats and fish ? A Source for Cardinal Tetras exported in large numbers is providing income for the local people,sustaining that particular habitat and fish and preventing that habitat being possibly destroyed if that was not happening
 

zozo

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That is a question applicable for the intire pet industry.. Love goes a long way.. Many may ask what it realy is beeing animal friendly, loving nature and use terms like Humane with a suffix in affiliation to this concept.

Spending large amounts of money on a pedigree Canine that is doomed to suffer major health issues? All that only for its looks.

Same for a pedrigee Feline doomed to live an intire life on a sofa only seeing the outside world through a window?

Birds in a Cage or on chained to a stick, because it looks and sings so nice or even talks like us..

Animals like Elephants in a Zoo, a migratory and very inteligent social animal kept captive in a much to small invironment doomed to develop health issues because it is deprived from what it needs to most, able to migrate.

The list goes on and on about endlessly.. And 99% of the humans supporting this practice, steers away from the question "Why?"and "What is it excactly what you realy love in this? With absolute silly worthless excuses.

Bottom line, deep down honnest.. :)

It is all about showing off and loving yourself more.

And in this process we still are trying hard to rotate the bush and find a human justification for this morbitity to economicaly get the most plessure out of it. :thumbup:

Have fun.. :rolleyes:
 
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zozo

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it may sound crazy but I stopped going to zoo's
Not to me, last time i viseted a zoo 38 years ago.. :thumbup: There are/were definitively beautifull things to see.. But also a lot that i just cannot understand.

I once viewed an interview with a zoo caretaker.. And he proudly stated with a nice twist, zoo's are the modern version of Noahs Ark.. Preserving species and preventing extinction. And that needs funding, croud funding?.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p03rn7p1
 

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