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Banbury Cross

a pillow for lost thoughts...

Archives for: April 2015

Earth's Day

Mother Earth is a pretty cool planet. Probably the coolest one in the whole Universe. Yet its own children are slowly turning her green pastures into a plastic junkyard.

Growing overpopulation, arctic warming, water shortages, disappearance of bees, never ending deforestation, overuse of chemical agents are but a small sample of human induced headaches facing our little blue green orb. Add to it the chronic hostility between nations, the misaligned financial system and an increasing number of nuclear countries and it must be clear that we as a species are moving in the wrong direction.

None of those problems are beyond solution. But they would require focus, coordination and a long term effort. All currently in short supply. And a tad of common sense would not hurt either. When I was a kid, I thought that by the year 2000 we'd be exploring the Solar system, developing sustainable communities there, harnessing clean energy and, in general, behaving like rational human beings that we purport to be. Yet we still focus on fighting each other over scarce natural resources, on polluting the intellectual space with mind boggling display of political, religious and cultural bigotry, and when we can't take that any more, we drown out our natural conscience by watching meaningless sitcoms on TV.

Over the past few millennia, we have found ourselves in the middle of an environmental and climactic sweet spot, in which, thanks to the recent advances of technology and agriculture, we can actually feed roughly 7 billion people. But that sweet spot is not guaranteed forever. Not only is the arable land disappearing, but that mild and moderate climate that makes large scale farming possible is more precarious that we think. Should we dislodge that finely balanced equilibrium, the ensuing storm may not become the spectacular catastrophe the climate fear mongers revel in, but we may lose the ability to feed ourselves.

To even begin tackling some of the accrued problems, we will have to start looking at other people as partners, not rivals. We will have to replace confrontation with collaboration. And that's a tall order in the era of increasing inequalities. We like to think of ourselves as little angels, but the bloody history of our species says otherwise. I am afraid only an invasion from outer space would make us show some team spirit. However, if we fail to correct our ways, then in the not too distant future, there will be a point where Mother Earth will say no to our silly genes.


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