Miranda’s Daily Blog: Day 77

I know what you’re probably thinking. Yes, it’s true, in my last blog I did cross my fingers and hope it would rain, so I shouldn’t really be complaining about it, right? But you know, when I woke up in the morning to the drumming of raindrops on the tarp, I must admit that I shrunk down a little deeper into my sleeping bag and thought for a minute I would just like to go right on back to sleep! So when, next minute, my phone beeps with a message “yoga time” from my buddy (we help to remind each other to get up and do our morning yoga) I wrote back to say I’d do it soon (ish), not right now. But of course, if I let myself be scared of a little bit of rain, well, when it comes to winter I’d be stuck in my swag for weeks on end! So, I pulled myself out of the cosy sleeping bag, stepped (or rather crouched) out from under the tarp and into the rain.

So, there I was “saluting to the sun” while it was no where in sight! And you know what, it was amazing. I breathed in and held my face up to the rain to let the drops fall onto my face. (Just like having a shower, only you can’t turn the hot tap on!). I breathed out and watched the mist slowly shifting shapes, the silhouettes of trees appearing and disappearing. I breathed in as I listened to the sounds of birds enjoying their rainy morning exercise as much as me. I breathed out and felt reinvigorated and ready for the day. Wow, I can’t believe I had even for a moment contemplated staying curled up in my sleeping bag under the tarp, what was I thinking!?  My morning rainy yoga session had me feeling enthusastic and upbeat all day.

As I promised, I am going to tell you all about Sunday’s visit from a group of wonderful volunteers involved in carbon accounting. I’m sorry that it’s a little bit late now, but I’ve had some technical difficulties! As an introduction to what carbon accounting is all about, I thought I’d show you this little video produced by The Wilderness Society:


Here are the team measuring my tree in order to calculate the amount of carbon stored there:

After measure the tree, the volunteers used an allometric equation, specific to the species and the conditions in which it is growing (in wet forest on fertile dolerite soils). Through this process they were able to get an estimated biomass of 55 tonnes (that is how much the tree wieghs, minus its water content).  Half of this biomass is actually carbon because carbon is the basic building blocks of all living things. The Observer Tree therefore contains 27.5 tonnes of carbon which has been taken out of the atmosphere and converted from CO2 into wood and leaves over the life of the tree, something like 300 years. If all the carbon in the tree is released into the atmosphere it will create 100 tonnes of CO2! The carbon footprint of the average Australian is 28 tonnes per year.

The allometric equation comes from an Australian government report and was devised by weighing all the bits of selected trees that had been cut down during a typical logging operation in Tassie’s southern forests.  Click here to see the National Carbon Accounting System report.

Thanks to all the volunteers who came out on the weekend. It’s great to know that my tree is storing so much carbon and helping to reduce climate change. Yet another important reason why we need to protect this forest so urgently!

I had another crowd of people walk through the forest to visit me. Stay tuned for a video blog coming soon to a computer near you! ;)

Miranda

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Posted on February 29, 2012, in Daily Blog. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. I can only say thank you, Miranda! You are a truly remarkable young woman!

    I know your stand will make a difference!

    Much respect!

  2. Given this tree is estimated to contain 27.5 tCO2, at the current Australian Government price of $23/tCO2, the raw carbon value of the tree is 27.5t x $23 = $632.50.

    But this ignores the replacement cost of the tree which took 300 years to grow. It also excludes the intrinsic ecological contributed values of the tree as part of the forest, so the measure is simplistic.

    As a guide to estimate the financial replacement carbon value of this 300 year old tree (again excluding the intrinsic ecological contributed values), in financial asset terms this is its future value (FV).

    The Future Value (FV) is the value of the asset in the future factoring in its present value (nominally $632.50), the time of not having that asset (300 years), and applying compound rate of interest on that $632.50 over 300 years using an interest rate assumption (lets say 5% per year).

    The FV calculation shows the compounded future value of this tree then is $15,690,573,287. That is the financial carbon replacement value of the tree alone is worth $15 billion.

    It is a concept that deserves exploration and debate.

  3. Miranda,

    This is for Tasmania’s forests.

    http://www.habitatadvocate.com.au/?p=14700

    Forever faithful
    Tigerquoll

  4. Caroline Joseph

    Hi Miranda Its so hot tonight here in NSW and I am up reading todays blog and looking at some of the videos and thinking that you are probably fast asleep in your perch and am just marvelling that this is now 73 days. Interesting that you have become such a part of my life and that of many people in Bellingen. I am hoping that one day you will come and visit our little town. You have inspired me to dedicate energy specifically to our local forests and trying to create a greater awareness of logging issues in the North East. Sweet dreams Miranda and love to your crew from Caroline.

  5. Glenys Gibson

    Thank you again Miranda for educating us on the value of keeping our old growth forest. Stay safe, lots of love xxxxxxxxxxxx

  6. HI miranda – sending you all our love from the centre – its raining out here too, and today the Todd river started flowing – always an exciting time in the desert. we think of you often, what you are sharing with so many is inspiring – and educational! – stuff. keep strong! peachy, petal and kids xxx

  7. You are amazing and all the forest activists on the front line. Wish I were there.
    Cheers Joanne

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