A CNN piece posing the question “Will we write Earth’s next chapter or its obituary?” was released just days before the start of the recent Paris Climate Summit and contributed to the recent media frenzy surrounding climate change. It took the Summit to bring the topic front and center as ‘the news of the day’, which is unfortunate, because the reality is that the issue has been here and is here to stay – certainly as an increasingly impactful issue beyond our great grand children’s’ generation.
So, still, it boils down to what to do. There’s been no shortage of flag waving, typical political rhetoric, factoids, and doomsday prophecy, but in the end it is going to come down to real action. And even at that, further delays in real action are going to result in the inability to respond to the changes that are already set in motion. I am certainly not a climate change expert – far from – but as an environmental enthusiast and having a keen eye for change in the ocean at least over the past 20 years, it is very fair to say that Earth is changing.
Do we need to buffer the change? Yes.
Do we need to be more environmentally responsible or ‘green’? Yes.
Can we really stop what is already snowballing? No.
The CNN piece poses the question of humanity writing Earth’s obituary through our industrialization. Well – short of getting smacked by another planet that falls out of orbit Earth will be here far longer than Homo sapiens. The problem is that we’re digging our own grave, even with the warning signs right in front of us, and being smart enough to make reasonable projections on change.
We should be asking, in a very serious way, if humanity can survive the projected rate of climate change. It doesn’t just mean bearing the heat either – it means millions of people displaced due to food shortages, water shortages, and housing shortages – our fundamental human needs challenged and at a grand scale. That spells major catastrophe where only the strongest will survive.
This is ecology 101, and the real plan needs to be more about how to respond in the aftermath of change, rather than how to stall change. In the end, the change is coming.
I hate to sound so negative when I should be joining the activists in advocating everything blue and green. However, I fear we’re going to miss the mark in planetary management. Just remember – Earth will still be here, but will we? Perhaps it doesn’t matter, but then again the continuance of consciousness in this universe depends on it. So, yes, help the planet. But through that start embracing values that will help ourselves.