As the dog days of summer wind down, it’s hard not to notice how the climate is suffering brutally right now across many areas of the globe.
Crop failures have hit hard across Europe. Australia is under an intense drought. Warm water representing ‘archived heat’ has penetrated deep into the arctic. Coral reefs are dying through mass bleachings. The stocks of ocean fisheries are in deep trouble. Insect and bird populations remain in a state of collapse.
It couldn’t be any more clear that our society’s demands for ever-more “growth” are taking an increasingly dangerous toll. “Growth” is now the enemy of life on the planet; yet there are precious few leaders willing to admit as much.
What we need is less pressure on vital ecological systems and precious remaining resources. But good luck finding a politician willing to admit that.
Though a refreshing exception is French environmental minister Nicolas Hulot who dramatically resigned his position last week, on live television, declaring “I don’t want to lie to myself anymore.” His view is that the government is not addressing the major environmental issues properly and he didn’t want his presence to give the false appearance that it was. Kudos to Nicolas, though I’m not sure that losing such a rare principled person in government is a step in the right direction.
Operating On Blind Faith
Most politicians appear to think that there are no big issues out there ecologically-speaking. Of course, very few of them spend any time outside or understand where their food even comes from. Most subsist on the blind faith that our planet will somehow always bounce back from the abuses we inflict on it, despite reams of mounting evidence that it’s hitting a mulitplying number of breaking and tipping points.
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