Thursday, October 15, 2009

3 Reprints for "Blog Action Day"

I think people that are skeptical about human impact on our environment should try skydiving. I used to jump in Sparta in Southern Illinois. It was close to the Baldwin coal fired electric plant. There was a brown line in the atmosphere you passed through on the way to altitude. I always felt better about breathing when we flew above it.

As you looked out over God’s country you couldn’t help but notice the quilt of man made terrain as for as the eye could see. There wasn’t an inch of property that wasn’t totally shaped by people.

When you think about space being only 62 miles up you get a sense of how thin our bubble of atmosphere is.

Of course the real problem is our population explosion. I know I sound like a broken record, but the planet’s population has tripled in my lifetime. Our planet can’t handle this kind of exponential growth.

There are consequences from our actions. Why do people deny it?

Sharon commented on my last post that you didn’t have to be a skydiver to see the effect humans have on our environment. She then asked, “Did you start recycling?”

While there is hypocrisy on my part, the point of my post was not “Let’s recycle.”

Let me explain my point to you and the other two of you who read my posts.

I have a lot of conservative and even a few liberal friends who refuse to believe we can have any effect on our environment whatsoever. Most are convinced there’s a political agenda when anyone points out anything negative we do to this planet.

From the perspective of skydiving our effect is incredibly obvious. Every square inch of the world will soon be covered with an ugly shag carpet. We all live together in a small room without windows and everyone’s smoking.

My personal frustration is the denial. Maybe you’re frustrated with my lack of participation in the solution. My kids are showing me the way and we recycle in the county when I’m there. We don’t really have it set up in the city but there’s really no excuse for me not to. I do recycle cans but that’s totally motivated by greed.

In case anyone doesn’t know, aluminum isn’t worth anything right now.

While I’m at it I may as well get this off my chest. I know some friends will get pissed. I recently started to recycle. The reason I do is to show solidarity with the cause. The carbon that’s released in the processing plants, not to mention getting recyclables trucked to them is practically a wash. You can’t even argue that we’re saving finite resources with some things. Glass is sand.

I worry that there might be a placebo effect. People might think they’re making a difference.

We’re at a crisis point with our environment no matter what corporate interests are telling us.

The things that are killing us are exponential population growth, subsidized corn, corn fed cows, nitrogen fertilizers, coal fired energy plants, and the killing off of bio-diversity.

If we all became vegetarians we’d reverse global warming. I know this will never happen but we have to at least stop feeding cattle corn. I’m not going into details. It’s easy to do the research.

We’re living in a world where everyone screams, “We must end our dependence on foreign oil!” Then when gas prices go back down temporarily everyone buys trucks again. Public perception has always baffled me. Why is it SUVs are an embarrassment to me and not to others?

It’s like bling and other shows of ostentation. It all gives me a sense of hopelessness.

I know these 3 reprints aren't specifically about climate change. I just want to point out the human impact on our environment.

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