The end is not nigh, but it’s getting nearer
Perceptions by Gerry Warner
“She’s alive . . . She’s beautiful . . . She’s complex . . . She’s finite . . . She’s hurting . . . She’s worth defending . . . She’s our Mother.”
Thus begins the most stunning video I’ve seen in my life and I’d like to share it with you before it’s too late. Please take me seriously because it’s all of us that’s threatened. You, me, every one we love. Every form of life on the planet. The planet itself. No one escapes this Grim Reaper because the Grim Reaper is us. Our greed, our materialism, our indifference to what’s happening right before our eyes that we refuse to see because we’d rather believe in the myth of our invincibility and that the rules don’t apply to us.
Well they do, but before I try to say more in my pathetically, inadequate way, see the video for yourself and try to deny that you didn’t feel the earth move a bit beneath your feet. Using our wonderful technology, the very technology that’s leading us over the abyss, turn your computer on and Google “She’s alive – Bittu Sahgal.” If that doesn’t work, go to YouTube and do the same. What you’ll see first looks like the eye of a Cyclops, but it’s really the Grand Prismatic Spring in Yellowstone Park, the third largest hot spring is the world and filled with pigmented bacteria and steaming microbial mats, a fate not dissimilar to what awaits humankind if all of us don’t smarten up.
Don’t read any further. I said words are inadequate. But after you’ve viewed this astounding video rejoin me and I’ll attempt to explain what it says to me.
Glad to have you back. If that video doesn’t grab your gut, nothing will. As for its canary-in-the-mine-shaft message to all of us, I can only tell you what it says to me. We’re doomed! No, not tomorrow. Not likely this year or even the next decade, but we’re getting damn close. Think back to the video. Remember all the shots of the water rising? We all know why – Global Warming – but how many of us are willing to raise a finger to stop it? Precious few, and from a climatological point of view, it’s nothing short of a tragedy for all species of life on earth today. The UN Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change says industrial pollution by mankind is responsible for 95 per cent of the global warming we’re now experiencing. And what’s that warming doing? It’s melting the Arctic and Antarctic ice packs with sea levels predicted to rise between six inches and two feet (18 cm to 20 cm) by the end of this century. More than 100 million people live within three feet (one metre) of mean sea level. The implications are obvious. It won’t be long before New York starts to look like Venice and millions will be displaced in Southeast Asia, Europe, Florida and Richmond to name but a few. The oceans are also becoming acidified from atmospheric pollution, coral reefs are dying and fish stocks are in free fall, which could lead to large-scale food shortages world-wide.
You also saw the clear-cutting of the tropical rain forests in the video. Miles and miles of once green land turned to brown and barren wasteland much like the once lush clear cut blocks in the forests of BC, another chainsaw massacre. And then there were all those coal-fired generating plants belching smoke in the air over China and the people on the streets below many of them wearing face masks. I’ve been to China myself and can tell you that the Great Wall is as close to the suburbs of Beijing as the North Shore Mountains are to Vancouver, but you rarely see it through the smog.
And just in case you think Canada doesn’t share the blame, what about the Tar Sands of Alberta? They are so big they can be seen from outer space! When waterfowl land on the treatment ponds they die within minutes while the discharge goes into the already heavily polluted Athabasca River and is blamed for a rash of cancer deaths in Fort Chipewyan downstream.
Let’s cut to the chase. We’re a greedy and reckless species. We think mainly of ourselves unlike the brave souls being killed by poachers as they try to protect the forests and wildlife of the Amazon Basin. The attitude in the Industrial West is: “I’m all right Jack.” Let Nature take care of itself. Her bounty is unending. Don’t talk to me about a carbon tax to wean us off oil. That’s drug addict talk. We’re addicted to oil and if we don’t use the intelligence the Creator gave us to beat our addiction only one fate awaits us. Catastrophe!
Make sure you see the video.
Gerry Warner is a retired journalist and tries hard to be an optimist despite all the assaults on Mother Earth.