Reading The Meadowlands reminded me of some ideas from my Environmental Ethics class last semester. First, in Snake Hill, Robert Sullivan describe the Meadowlands as a place where people from town dump their garbage. And in several of the later chapters, he noticed garbages around a lot of other places when Sullivan is exploring the Meadowlands, such as his trip to Walden and his description of the Garbage Hill. His discovery has reminded me the idea of binary I learned in my Ethics class. When Sullivan is enjoying the beauty side of the Meadowlands, he also discovered that it is not as much pretty when the garbage is around. It really amused me when he describe his experience of drinking the purified water in Kearny, “When I finally poured the liquid into my mouth, I thought it tasted kind of funny, so I spit it out even faster than Dave” (p. 84).
One other thing I noticed in the book is that human activities would certainly influencing the nature. In Snake Hill, Sullivan described that a school student in Secaucus has discovered a “new” species of animals when he brought the oyster shell he found in his backyard. The teacher has never seen this type of species, meaning that this is a new type of species coming to the local landscape. The oyster could possibly be brought to here along with the garbage from other places. According to what I have learned from my Ecology class, introducing a new species could influence the whole ecology cycle of the local area, and there certainly will be more species to discover from the garbage brought to the Meadowlands by people. Further more, to discover how those new species interacting with their new environment, how what kind of changes could them bring to the local area.
However, the change of whether/climate/geography (etc.), could also influencing human activities. Sullivan described a train crash that caused by the frog, which has taken people’s life, and caused a lots of inconvenience to local people.