BLUE MARBLE Revisited
Did Ideology or the application of well researched, tested and practical Science enable this photograph to be taken? No need to answer.
In early March at the start of this Warming Argument series (Somewhere in Space), it was highlighted that from this distance there is no indication of the Planet damaging activity being carried out by Humans. In 1968 we had a population of less than 4 Billion. In 2020 we are just under 8 Billion. A staggering increase to say the least. Of course, we have placed our Planet wide ecosystem under severe threat. We cannot double our population in 50 years and not expect to place enormous stress on our Planet operating system.
The quality of our biosphere (where we live) has plummeted. Species extinctions have gone through the roof. We have 50 years of plastic use now indelibly stamped throughout our food chains with micro plastics being consumed by Humans. We have increasing frequency of catastrophic weather events – drought, fire, flood and collapsing ecosystems. The Oceans are yielding far less catch they did. Local wars are being fought over precious clean water resources and fertile soil.
Untold misery now grips us with Covid 19 virus, which has jumped from other parts of the Animal kingdom to humans. There may be many more nasty viruses out there just waiting for the opportunity to jump and attack. Much research of melting permafrost in northern parts of the planet confirms Stone Age bacteria still alive after being frozen for thousands of years. We keep on squeezing nature into tighter spaces with our population crowding into areas where we never were in the past. We have raped and pillaged nature and all its wonder for what? To survive? To some extent, but when talking survival, we utilise what we need to live, not to straight out consume or build obscene material wealth at the expense of the Planet and all that inhabit it.
It is no coincidence that the biggest Greenhouse Gas emitters and general polluters are primarily in western industrialised Nations. It is no coincidence that the main drivers of dodgy Climate change skeptisism and denial are of the same Nations, especially the USA. It is no coincidence that the obscenely wealthy are within the same Nations. It is no coincidence that much of that wealth has been made from stripping ecosystems, depleting our resources and polluting the atmosphere.
China does rate a mention here as it’s past record of unfettered pollution was staggering. The same Industries that caused massive pollution in the West turned a blind eye to China’s environmental transgressions. Much of their manufacturing base moved to cheap China from the 1990’s onward. China did eventually start doing the right things and signed up to Greenhouse gas emissions targets while others including the USA abandoned the same treaties. China still is madly planting Billions of trees. At least they are doing something substantial to reverse their terrible sins of their past.
What have we been doing in the West? Dismantling Environmental legislation of the 1980’s because it is ‘too tough’ on Industry! One USA Republican Senator (James Inhofe) likened the Environmental Protection Authority to the Gestapo! Why did we toughen up the legislative framework in the first place? Because Industry was harming Community and Environmental Health! This dismantling coincided with stepping up aggressive and coordinated campaigns against Climate scientists and activists.
The more I delved into the dark underbelly of this “Warming Argument”, the more I came to question the Ideology of the ‘Free Market’ with less Government regulation, to allow market forces and technological change to drive the World. Where has this ideology led us? Disproportionate and massive wealth for the very few at the expense of our health, well-being and potentially a bleak future for the have nots. To challenge the free marketeers with all their resources is like David taking on Goliath. David did win, but only after Goliath had already smashed all and sundry opposition. Last resort times of now realised an unconventional hero to stand up. Greta Thunberg is today’s David.
Look to D. Trump and his personal attacks at Greta Thunberg. It is probably a waste of time to inform them that Greta Thunberg put herself into the Global spotlight literally by herself. She wasn’t wooed by Green groups or lobbyists, she stepped up and said enough is enough. Fantastic that a 16 year old could frighten these self-appointed leaders of the ‘Free World’ to the extent that they have trained their collective guns on her. Well, the rest of us are with Greta and we are firm in our resolve. We are backed by proper tested Science in case you have forgotten.
Trump’s allies have trotted out a 19 year old Naomi Seibt whose inspiration is in white nationalism, as an alternative Greta Thunberg. They have manufactured a Poster Girl for those of the far right. She has no conviction or substance, grabbing her 15 minutes of fame while being feted at ‘Free market ‘ conferences to promote conspiracies of hate. She stated, “Goal of Climate Scientists is to shame Humanity”! On any level of rational thought, how does that statement make sense? It does not. Yet the Heartland Institute pays her to state this garbage.
Pathetic they have become in their pursuit of shutting down the harsh truth that affects their personal wealth. There are no morals, honesty or ethics in what they do. Meanwhile Climate Activist Groups such as 350.org state – “If it is wrong to wreck the climate, then it is wrong to profit from that wreckage”. Which statement has substance and validity? One statement is totally emotive intended to create hate of Scientists and Activist supporters, and the other while emotive does have a serious point that needs addressing.
There is an old saying in Australian Rules Football – ” Play the ball, not the man”. This is what the Climate Change debate has degenerated into and all driven by the Free Marketeers and those that scream individual rights above all else. “Playing the Man” is their game. They have lost sight of why Scientists were so concerned in the first place. These are the very same people who take serious offence at being called “Deniers” and call themselves good and Decent people. They make it sound as if the rest of us are a bunch of low life deviants, when plainly we are not. Individual rights will not do us much good when our Climate goes haywire and we are being devastated by catastrophic events like Covid 19.
In the USA, the same people that deny climate issues are also the ones screaming that Covid 19 is a conspiracy plot by those Lefty Democrats to take over the USA! I keep on having flashbacks to the Movie “Idiocracy“. Was it indeed prophetic? Is it something in the water or the Gatorade (watch the movie) that makes their brains act and talk that way? To present an argument in a considered Scientific manner is something that they avoid. But who am to criticize? I am criticizing because I have studied the facts of this sorry matter over 43 years. It took my skeptic mind about 25 of those 43 years to 100% accept the fact that Humans have induced rapid global warming and messed up the Climate. It was not some ‘Johnny come lately” decision or Ideology that drove this, but established Science backed by an overwhelming majority of Scientists.
There is no sustainability in the Ideologue argument as Proper tested science sees to that. There is no sustainability in the way these Ideologues attack others not of the same opinion. That just leads to more hate and still nothing is done to reverse the appalling damage being done at a human and environmental level. There is no sustainability in our current Free Market model that these ideologues promote to allow the exclusive few to selfishly make decisions and profits which seriously affect the future health of Humankind.
Political ideology and its philosophies drive our Capitalist societies. But to what end? Capitalism is based on the concept of growth. To grow, we must make more babies which fuels the need for housing and consumer goods. More infrastructure is needed to support this. It is a never-ending cycle. More of the Planets raw materials are needed to feed the monster. More damage is the only outcome. The Free marketers want us to believe that this is the way. All we are and have ever been are pawns to their quest of profit.
It is unimaginable to think how bad our Planets ecosystem would be now if it weren’t for the Activist Scientists and supporters 50 years ago shouting loudly about the environmental consequences of the “Bad Old Days” continuing unabated. I am certain our Oceans, rivers and lakes would be toxic soups. The air we breathe would be revolting. Ecosystem collapses would be out of control, lands stripped bare, mass starvation events would be commonplace and more civil wars as a result. For the very few at the top of the tree – the parasitic predators of Industry and Conservative Governments, their life expectancy would probably match what we have today. However, the rest of us would be facing much illness and lower life expectancy. We do still have a small breathing window thanks to the Environmental activism that commenced 50 years ago. Is it just a stay of execution though?
Throughout the last 50 years of this most tragic tale, the Scientists who were the “Harbingers of Doom” have not sat on their butts comfortable with the early forecast outcomes. They have re-modeled, re tested and re-affirmed our unfortunate truth. Scientists are also testing theories of counteracting our increasing greenhouse gases, to find solutions to help our future human existence. The other side of Industry and far right conservatives? What are they doing to smooth out the path to a habitable future? Really not much at all. Some like BP, Shell and BHP are committing to a more environmentally friendly future. We now have ethical and green investment options. But, and a big but, they do not represent the majority who appear to still want to make as much profit as possible before doomsday.
I am sad. I am angry and above all extremely frustrated. How to discuss the way forward for Humanity in our Blue marble Ecosystem when it is us Humans that want to deny, deny and then keep on denying the truth at any cost just to win an argument! In many ways we do not deserve the life-giving opportunity of our Blue Marble. In many ways we deserve to get swallowed up in the coming Doomsday. To the other side of this senseless and now Boiling Argument – Just STOP! For all of Humanity’s sake make Love, not War!
I am just one insignificant person with a plain love of Nature and my family for all to see. I am an Urban dweller who craves for clear un-polluted nights to wonder at the marvels of the milky way and be in awe of our existence on a rotating Blue Marble in a tiny part of space. I crave for us all to live as best we can, to be in harmony with and to nurture our natural environment that has sustained us all from the beginnings of our human time. I crave for peace, goodwill and cooperation in dealing with our human impacted Climate issues.
Science has got us to where we are now with Human development. Industry has taken advantage of the science for their selfish and greedy ends at a massive cost to our Planet’s health. Conservative Industry and Government, deniers and fake skeptical Scientists are Parasites of Nature sucking it dry until there is nothing left. There is no value, just hurt in what they do.
Climate related Scientists are real heroes of the Planet. The Activists that support them are also real heroes that ensure we remember to care for the Planet. They are the ones that remind us that in order to ensure our future, it takes a little bit from every one of the Billions to contribute. Thank you the Scientist and Activist Heroes from the 1970’s until now. Thank you to the new generation of Heroes like Greta Thunberg that provide hope to deliver us a future of caring and nurturing for the only Planet we have. I love you all. You are on my Christmas Card list forever!
Chris Round in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 19/4/20, Day 32 of Covid-19 Isolate 2020. The City air is clean, the stars are out at night and our Rivers now a wonderful tropical emerald green. Just breathe because that is all we have and need. May Nature pour rain over us all and wash our Sins away. (The subtle beats of “Raingurl” by Yaeji play in the background)
References throughout: Wikipedia, My aging Brain, Desmogblog.com, Skepticalscience.com, Scientists Warning.org, UN various agencies, TheConversation.com, Brittanica, Dictionary.com, Various news portals, Various Climate denier sites that I choose not to mention.
Playlist below. Enjoy!