Disclaimer: as I, who have retreated to soft rolling hills in north-eastern Romania, was watching this video I was having breakfast. I found two ducks eggs this morning (after many months with no duck eggs) and made an omlet from them, with dried mushrooms and cheese. I also made a lovely fall salad of spinach, salad leaves, cabbage, carrot and onion.
As I was listening, despite the warm omlet, cold shivers traveled through my spine and abdomen.
It IS too late. There is nothing we can do to change the short and mid-term effects of global warming. All we can do, especially those of us who are most vulnerable, is hold on tight and find shelter. Anything we do manage to do in the near future may have effects on future generations … though I have my doubts about our capacity as a human species to do much right now. Sandy didn’t put a dent in American consumerism. Chinese walking with breathing-masks didn’t put a dent in Chinese real-estate development. What can we expect the cry of the Philipphines to do when it too will quickly fade from public awareness? Consciousness will eventually shift, there is no doubt in my mind about that … just as there is no doubt that it will take many more typhoons and deaths for that to happen.
The brutal irony of this situation is that the most constructive thing in terms of overall ecological health is the devastating storm itself. That is the planet healing. That is our planetary ecological system responding to the current ecological stresses, moving energy, trying to restore a healthier balance in the ecosystem. Such storms and anomalies will continue until the planetary ecology is healed and there is nothing we can (nor should) do to stop it. We can however learn from it. We can, though it will continue to come with a devastating price, learn to embrace it, to appreciate it and to reshape our lives with it.
We have been building up to these stormy times for a long long time. It is a storm we have unleashed. It would be naive and foolish and wasteful to even think that we can stop it. This is us, as a species, learning that fire burns by reaching into the fire. Now comes the burning sensation. I have faith in human nature. We will learn not to reach into the fire. Our wounds will heal and we will have earned scars of wisdom … but that is a long and gradual journey that can only grow from the present, not change it.
George Carlin was right when he said “The planet is fine, the people are fucked”:
Closing thought (also inspired by the words of the Philippines representative): Skiing season is starting and is the only sport I enjoy watching (used to enjoy doing it too). I would love to see this Skiing season take a huge hit due to a boycott of the coming Russian winter olympics. The Russian olympics are a rare opportunity to come together around nature (arctic drilling), human rights (sheesh the list is long), gay rights, civil rights, balances of power in government, etc. It is way more important to me that we come together in values then we do in sports. Boycotting Russia is an opportunity for valuable unification – a simultaneous disintegration and re-integration. It is hard for me to understand or accept how there can be any athletes that are actually willing to participate in this event.