RAUCH, François Antoine
Harmonie hydro-végétale et météorologique, ou recherches sur les moyens de recréer avec nos forêts la force des températures et la régularité des saisons, par des plantations raisonnées. 2 vols.Paris: Les Frères Levrault, 1802.
Rauch was particularly concerned with deforestation, which not only affected the agriculture and scenery of the countryside, but also the whole ecological balance of crops, flora and fauna, and human interaction with the ecological system. He discussed the interrelationships between climate, terrain and vegetation, and suggested ways to establish a state of 'harmony' between the environment and man. He included topics such as the ecological balance found in mountain regions, and suggested in the final chapter, that a ministerial department "of the interior" be set up in order to monitor ecological issues and supervise relevant matters at a local level were included. In his extensively revised second edition of 1818, which bore the title Régenération de la nature végétale.... (2 vols.) his attention turned to the idea of "regeneration" he argued that it is necessary to reverse the process of human destruction of the environment, particularly the world-wide destruction of forests, in order to return the planet to a state better supportive of life. He Rauch began with a consideration of the relationship of forests to weather conditions, surveyed the effects of deforestation world-wide on climate, and animal and human populations, and set out steps to be taken: what sorts of vegetation should be planted where, renewal of water sources, and the establishment of governmental agencies in France and all over the globe to observe the environment and take action. He urged the agencies, for example, to consider changes over short periods of time ("to what extant animals and birds are scarcer in the last thirty years" in a particular area), and to attempt regulation of factory fuel sources. In his closing argument he urges the obligation "to conserve the noble economy," and "to conserve that from which we benefit." Digital facsimile of the 1802 edition from Google Books at this link. Digital facsimile of the 1818 edition from Google Books at this link.
Subjects: Agriculture / Horticulture, BIOLOGY › Ecology / Environment