Literary Analysis Essay on From a Sand County Almanac: Sustainability and Conservation

Published: 2023-03-29
Literary Analysis Essay on From a Sand County Almanac: Sustainability and Conservation
Type of paper:  Book review
Categories:  Ecology Nature
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 1036 words
9 min read

In his book From a Sand County Almanac, Aldo Leopold vouches for the appreciation of nature and propounds for a social role in the preservation of the ecosystem. By examining social ethics towards the environment, Leopold constructed a paradigm model through which humans can realize conservation and sustainability. Leopold has the perspective that man has no ethic yet in his relationship with land, animals, and plants that grow on it. Some of his ideas to safeguard ecological balance, prudently utilize resources like water and protect plants and animals are still contemporary instruments of sustainability, ecology, and animal conservation.

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In contemporary, there are renewed efforts to safeguard wild animals. The idea of natural ecological balance is becoming unanimous, and humans continually appreciate the naturalism of existence. Conservationists and animal rights groups are creating awareness of the need for man to stop interfering with natural balance. Borrowing a classic example from Leopold, people perceived that by killing wolves, the deer population would grow (Leopold 11). The repercussion, however, was adverse. The deer population thrived, but this posed a threat to the vegetation. The increased consumption of plants by the deer disoriented the landscape of the habitat through soil destruction. As Leopold puts it, he witnessed every edible bush and seedling browsed, first to damage, and then to death. In the end, this pattern led to the end of the deer herd as a result of their overpopulation. This idea of noninterference with nature has been renewed in the contemporary. Conservationists and environmentalists are pushing for the need to safeguard natural balance and where it has been lost, they are calling for its reconstruction. The recent has witnessed some attempts to reintroduce some animals to their traditional habitats where they had been forcefully migrated to realize ecological balance. Humans have continually put efforts to protect endangered species through the construction of game reserves and sanctuaries.

Another Leopold idea that is still instrumentally contemporary is sustainability. In recent, humans have come to appreciate the need for prudent use of natural resources. This is envisioned in present agenda and policies that push for sustainable development. The recent decades have witnessed continued calls for non-wasteful resource use, environmentally friendly industrial activities, and preservative consumerism patterns, and all this aimed to safeguard the lifeline of planet earth. Sustainability goals urge that humans should reconstruct their effects on the environment by ensuring they prudently consume resources without threatening the ecosystem. Often, the theme is to avoid destroying the earth but to guarantee its continuity. The past had witnessed reckless and unchecked natural resource use, consumption patterns, and environmentally unfriendly production processes. In the aftermath of this, humanity has seen the destruction of biotic characteristics, life-threatening climatic changes, amongst other consequences. As a result of human activities, adverse, threatening climatic changes have taken place around the globe in recent times; some biotic species have been driven out of their natural habitats and become endangered.

As Leopold aptly put it, humans have never had a thought for their activities with natural resources like water, plants, and animals. Traditionally humans were centrally concerned with the utilization of natural resources with little concern of how it is done and the impact of such utilization patterns. Humans failed to see that beyond their need for a support, it could be a vital element elsewhere. Citing a classic example of water argues that humans do not perceive water to have other functions besides turning turbines, acting as a transport medium, and dispensing sewage (Leopold 12).

In recent, however, humans are redirecting their perspectives on natural resources. There are increased calls to people to protect oceans, seas, and lakes by desisting from polluting them. Requests are also being made for industries to re-engineer their production processes and to adopt new methods of waste dissemination that will reduce environmental threats and threats to climatic patterns. Sustainable development is becoming a global concern, and given the climatic and ecological consequences, humans have witnessed because of their activities. In contemporary humans are adopting eco-friendly processes and integrating alternatives in their modalities in order to conserve the naturalism of earth. A classic example is the invention of electric cars in order to reduce carbon emissions to the atmosphere and efforts to clean water bodies to save aquatic life.

Leopold's idea of fully preserving nature, however, seems to apply less in the contemporary. The idea that the natural establishment of the land should not be interfered with applies less at this age. According to Leopold, the natural paradigm of the property should be preserved. He argues that man is simply a member of the biotic system (Leopold 13).

This implies that man should observe naturalism and not disrupt it at all. It calls for a total distance from activities that touch on the natural distribution of plants and animals; rather, a man should harmoniously fit into the food chain. This idea seems inapplicable in contemporary for two reasons. First, the present is witnessing an ever-surging human population. The population of humans today has increased from decades ago. This means there is an increasing demand for settlement space, yet there is no equivalent increment inhabitable space for humans to occupy. Second, the distribution of resources and food humans require for their survival do not occur strategically within their habitable areas, but rather are randomly distributed in the ecosystem.

It is therefore imperative, that man moves from his habitat to other areas in pursuit of resources and food, and to explore more spaces to accommodate the increasing population. The consequence of this would be that humans extend to other areas outside their localities, and in effect, they will interfere with the natural ecological order. It is challenging to preserve natural balance at this age still because naturalism also does not guarantee survival, unchecked organic distribution can be destructive in its self or altogether can be contributing nothing towards the earth's survival. Human activities into the new ecological environment are not all inherently harmful but instead can be instrumental towards the continuation of an ecosystem or pose no threat to it. For instance, the modern age has seen effective rehabilitation of deserts and the birth of vibrant cities without harming the environment.

Works cited

Leopold, Aldo. From A Sand County Almanac (1949). Oxford, 1968.

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