Essay by Luke Foster
“Our mother earth is teaching us a lesson in universal responsibility. This blue planet is a delightful habitat. Its life is our life, its future, our future. Indeed, the earth acts like a mother to us all; as her children, we are dependent on her. In the face of the global problems, we are going through it is important that we must all work together.” the Dalai Lama
Over the past week I have been watching science fiction movies on Netflix every night and I used to not like Hollywood movies and preferred art house movies but now I enjoy them immensely as they tackle some of the biggest problems facing humanity mainly destruction of the earths natural habitat to the point where it won’t sustain us and also the depletion of the earths fuel sources that drives our comfortable lives with electricity for heat and light and to run hospitals and power cars, trucks, planes, and trains and all the other complex man made things that need fuel.
However, there are no easy answers and every choice of how to sustain this quality of living has both pros and cons. For example, many countries prefer nuclear power over fossil fuel powered energy sources and in some ways, this is cleaner energy but as with the Chernobyl and Fukushima power plant melt downs they can also be very destructive for the humans around them and flora and fauna too if something goes wrong.
On the other hand, coal and gas powered powerplants create many CO2 omissions which are incredibly destructive for the planet.
“Greenhouse gases pose severe environmental and health issues. They cause climate change by trapping heat, which in turn affects various species in already arid climates. The climate change caused by greenhouse gas emissions also contributes to extreme weather, wildfires, droughts, and food supply disruptions.”
Canadian environmentalist Dr David Suzuki has been campaigning for decades to find answers to these complex issues.
“There are some things in the world we can’t change – gravity, entropy, the speed of light, and our biological nature that requires clean air, clean water, clean soil, clean energy and biodiversity for our health and well-being. Protecting the biosphere should be our highest priority or else we sicken and die.” Dr David Suzuki
I am not sure what the answers are to these complex issues, but fossil fuels are a finite resource so we can’t rely on them forever and there is no easy replacement, but perhaps solar and wind power are cleaner sources of energy.
“As President, I’ll invest in renewable energies like wind power, solar power, and the next generation of homegrown biofuels. That’s how America is going to free itself from our dependence on foreign oil not through short-term gimmicks, but through a real, long-term commitment to transform our energy sector.” Barack Obama
While Obama was president, he had some interesting ideas on how to attack these complex problems.
“People must feel that the natural world is important and valuable and beautiful and wonderful and an amazement and a pleasure.” “The truth is: the natural world is changing. And we are totally dependent on that world. It provides our food, water and air.”
I have loved David Attenborough’s documentaries since my biology classes in school. His love and awe of the natural world instilled in generations the idea that this planet isn’t just for us humans to share and be custodians of but for all the earths plants, animals and sea life.
“Nature hasn’t gone anywhere. It is all around us, all the planets, galaxies and so on. We are nothing in comparison. There’s no map to human behaviour.” Bjork
I think Bjork has shown all musical and visual artist just how effective it is when culture with a message to save our planet can speak to the younger generations, so they are instilled with a conscience to save the planet.