Information for Action Contact Details:
Mail address: P O Box 245 6906 North Perth, WA, Australia
E-mail: Information for Action is a non profit environmental organization committed to environmental change in our global community. Work on the website began in 1999 by President Rowland Benjamin and is maintained by a group of talented volunteers.

Go to: Green Ideas

Collapsed Societies

11,000 BC Sumerians Began agriculture
Middle East Inappropriate irrigation methods resulted in accumulations of salt
Euphrates River Floodplain Swapped from farming wheat to barley (a more salt tolerant plant)
10,000 BC Abandoned through over-farming
3,000 BC Mayans Beginning of agriculture in irregular rainfall area
Copan Valley Trees cut down and used to make decorative plaster for houses
Deforestation and erosion
Sediment built up in rivers
Population halved from 27,000 to 15,000 in 1150 AD directly related
to environmental degradation
1250 AD Population crashed and area was abandoned
600 AD Anasazi Began to cut down trees
Chaco Canyon Introduced agricultural crops
South West USA Began farming drier hill slopes as population grew
Deforestation and over-farming increased with continued over population
Major droughts occurred in 1040, 1090 and 1117 AD
1150 AD Starvation and civil war occurred leading to collapse of society
800 AD Polynesians Began settlement
Easter Island Chopped down trees to build giant statues
Large scale deforestation
Population grew to an estimated 10,000 people
Extinction of land and sea birds, fish and all species of trees
Population declined from 30,000 to 2,000 by 1560s as they
had no food to eat
Resorted to cannibalism
1600 AD Collapse of society
984 AD Vikings Established Norwegian pastoral economy
Norse Greenland based on sheep, goats and cattle for producing dairy products
Also hunted caribou and seal causing a decrease in numbers of species
Trade important for development of society
Significant ecological damage due to deforestation
Little Ice Age in late 1300's early 1400's, impacted by climate change
Military problems with neighbours the Inuit,
significant numbers of Vikings killed in raids by Inuit's
Trade with Europe affected because of increasing sea-ice
Inappropriate cultural values, valued cows too highly
not appropriate to the Greenland environment
1440 AD Refused to learn from the Inuits, didn’t adopt technology that
would have helped them survive such as tools to kill whales and fish
Resulted in Viking society collapsing while the Inuits survived
1880 Somalia Agriculture and grazing became important industries
Low rainfall and droughts common
Deforestation and overgrazing resulted desertification and soil erosion
Salinisation occurred through inefficient irrigation
15 year Civil war started in 1991
Environmental degradation accelerated as a result
Ongoing Illegal hunting and fishing
High levels of water pollution
Extinction of wildlife as a result of ecological destruction
Have been used as the dumping site for hazardous toxic waste
materials from developed countries
1576 Bangladesh Area first conquered by Akbar, the great Mughal emperor
Area of periodic Monsoonal flooding
Deforestation occurred as a result of clearing land for agriculture
Farming of rice, jute, tea, sugarcane, tobacco, and wheat
Formerly part of Bengal, became East Pakistan in 1947
Independence in 1971, after civil war with West Pakistan
Ongoing Over hunting and fishing
Large scale deforestation and habitat loss
Sea level rise is causing a reduction in arable land area as well as
increased salt water intrusions, significant impacts on mangroves
Natural arsenic poisoning of ground water
Poverty and over population placing pressure on environment

shiir online solutions Bridgetown Hillside Garden Information for Action Luen Shing Metal Mfy Rowland Benjamin – Osteopath Safe Stretch Shiir Shoes Green Pages