Monday, 2 January 2023

The State of Everything?

Very often now we hear about the state of the planet, like global warming, the melting icecaps and that’s just for starters. I suppose there is no point in denying that these things happen and are accelerating as well. So, our existence as humans will be in ever increasing danger. To be frank, as a species we might have come to the end of our tenure. I have been a fan of nature programs on TV, series like hosted by Steve Backshall, naturist and explorer. The last issue I watched was a ‘trip’ into the Suriname forest on an unexplored river. The other program was about a exploration of a fjord in the Arctic. All very interesting and informative. But permit me to make one observation - what about the pressures put upon the environment by such programs? It is not just Steve, because with him are a host of others. The accompanying film directors, cameramen, helicopters to place the crew where they started the exploration and the pick-up. The pressures on the environment itself, the campsites, the alterations made to the environment as they travel along the river. Yes, the ice is melting in the Arctic, we could see that. But with the increasing “tourist” activity surely the warming will increase? Steve is showing a pristine world which now everyone else wants to see as well. I know that it is not Steve’s intention to help tourism along, neither does Sir David Attenborough but these programs as shown do not help the issue of global warming. In fact I believe we have already gone past the point of no return. All of us now must get used to vastly altered weather, caused by our insatiable appetites. There should be no doubt that humans have caused this and so the whole planet is now altering to a different ‘modus operandi’. Whether we can ‘weather’ these changes or not does not matter. If we can adapt, and to do so having to minimalise our numbers and ‘house’ people to livable areas, remains to be seen. If not, we will simply be just another species having gone extinct.

I am constantly surprised by the short-sightedness of people. We all know the problem of rubbish. Our household waste, plastics, metals (tinned foods), paper, and tonnes of left-over food, all of it clogs up the societies we have built. The waste is just mostly dumped on vast tracts of land to rot away for eons. There is more recycling but not enough. Young people who just love to protest about the environment have no problem with throwing away used Chinese food cartons, empty cans of Cola or other soft drinks and still more such as cigarette butts. All of it can be found on the street where I live. The truth is simple – we cannot and do not change.

Yet, people like Steve Backshall do point to a way where we can start to seriously protect the areas that we need to keep because they provide fresh oxygen and a safe haven for species under threat. We should stop tourist trips into the Arctic altogether. Cruising ought to be banned. Also cruising to the tropics or even further. In fact we need to re-examine the ‘holiday’ lifestyle. It may be hard but if you could give me an alternative way? Please explain how we could ensure that our children, grandchildren and further up the ladder will have a good life and that we can live on as a species? I’ll be most interested. But do not come to me if you are a politician because I simply don’t trust you to give a fair account on anything. It is sad but if you would only see the mess they have created, the endemic corruption, the totally inconsistent actions, then you might begin to understand the mess. I just wonder what our epitaph on the communal gravestone will say. It might be something like this – They came, they think they won, but did not conquer. They went to try their luck in Heaven. Happy New Year to all! May 2023 be better than 2022.

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