Monday, October 15, 2007

A Convenient Truth

(all photos in this post are not my own)

Today is Blog Action Day. Over 15,000 bloggers from around the web are uniting to help bring the environment to the forefront of people's minds. Every blogger taking part has posted about the environment in their own way and relating to their own topic with the aim being to get everyone talking towards a better future. You can view the list of blogs *here*.

So what am I going to post about? I gave this much thought. I considered posting about the Antarctic or about how our oil reserves are rapidly drying up, about carbon emissions, about some little animal somewhere that is about to pop out of existence without most of the world knwoing or caring, or how about the fact that many of us live in a throw-away society, or how about posting about Al Gore? I decided against all of these because quite frankly I'm not an expert in any of these. So, I thought I would write something from me, about how I believe we can all help the environment and why I think it is worth doing. My thoughts about this are very simple:
  • We have one planet with a finite amount of resources available.
  • Whatever we do, modern life means we will have an impact on the planet. It is up to us to minimise this.
  • We can all do something. Even the smallest thing done by everyone can have a massive impact collectively.
  • If we don't act more responsibly now, we may not be able to undo the harm we are causing.

This leaves me with an easy philosophy for anyone who might be interested:
  • Try to re-use what you can or recycle. Think before you bin. Producing new things takes energy and resources.
  • Carbon emissions are a fact of modern life. See what you can do to lessen them though, such as turning the heating down one degree, washing on a cooler cycle, turning the air con down, switching off a light when not in use, putting on a jumper before turning on the heating, insulating your home, insulating your hot water tank, thinking about the type of car you drive and it's mpg etc.
  • If we all turn down our heating by one degree then collectively we save a lot of energy and perhaps even a bit of cash ourselves.
  • I live on an island. If we don't all do something across the world, then I may need armbands and a rubber ring. The pretty photos you see on this post may not exist any more and many more animals and plants will be extinct.
My question is this: Is this really what we want? If the answer is 'no' then do something. I don't need to patronise you (and I hope I haven't) as I know you are all intelligent and caring people. Like the rain drop that jumped from the cloud to earth and ended a drought because the other rain drops followed, each one of us can make a difference. I really do believe it's the small things that can count. This is what I think of as a convenient truth. We can all do it and it really doesn't put us out that much.

I have finished now. You can take my soap box away and I promise to be quiet for a bit.


Shephard said...

Very nicely written. And lovely lovely photos and good advice that should get everyone to think about protecting this incredibly beautiful world we have.

Niall said...

I've had my head full of dots all day!..just realised 'Action Day' was I've adapted my post (badly)..Your words are full of an imperative that should promt us each and everyone to think and then do something..anything to conserve the rescurces of this beautiful wonderful jewel in space!

kenju said...

Good advice, and I've been trying to do most of those for years. The one place I fall short right now is buying water in disposable bottles. I have to break myself of that, and soon!

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Your Soapbox was eloquent and heartfelt and so very truthful and important dear B-K!
You are so right. It is the little things done by each of us that do make a dofference and will make a BIG difference...! Thank you for participating in this important day.

R. Sherman said...

About 25 years ago, the people of Missouri voted to tax themselves one eighth of one cent on every dollar spent to pay for conservation efforts in the various ecosystems (highlands, tall grass prairie, swamp delta, etc.) in the state. Today, that agency has more money than it knows what to do with, and we have the best conservation department in the country.

One we must realize is the conservation is a luxury good. We care about the environment because we can afford to to care. There are those, the poor of the world, who, best intentions aside, are still cooking their meals on burning cow dung.

Conserve, yes. Absolutely. But let's not forget those less fortunate, who do not have that option.

Lovely photos, BTW.


Bob-kat said...

I couldn't agree more with you R. Sherman. In fact, as this is a computer based blog, my post is directed at those who can afford to care by dint of the method of communication.

I also suspect that those of us that can afford to care, are the ones having the most impact on the environment. I love the fact that your state chose this tax but I have a little niggle with seeing the environment as a problem that money can solve. In the same way I have a problem with 'offsetting' against carbon emissions as the fact remains that those emissions have been let into the atmosphere already and no amount of cash can take them out again and unburn the fuel. I worry that some people might simply use cash as a means to assuage their guilt.

You raise a great point though :)

Hossein Jelveh said...

Dear bob-kat, thanks a lot for visiting my blog on Blog Action Day, and for your comment.
Your blog is great.

.:mar said...

Well said, Bob-kat. I am a recycling maniac.

Snaggle Tooth said...

My kind of article here- I'm a nature, plant, n animal lover. I always post my pics of nature around my home on Cape Cod, US.
I post about environment issues all the time without needing a special event day. My fav places all depend on it!
Good advice here, I do keep lots of stuff around to re-use too!
Have seen your comments all over blogland, finally made it to your blog.
(keep swimming)!

gautami tripathy said...

Well written and loved the photos too. It gives us much to think about.

We abuse the environment and don't give a though what is going to happen in the near future. We do not conserve enegy.


Glad Michele sent me back.

Beckie said...

Great post! I didn't join in with this, but I think I am going to do a post on it sometime soon.

The photos were fab.

b. s. buster said...

I hate to turn the hose of common sense on the global warming propaganda, but the "globe" has been warming for thousands of years. Our climate changes, our coastlines adjust. That's evolution. We may want to freeze our world as it is today, but we can't. To survive, man must learn to cope, and emulate cockroaches, not dinosaurs. That means harnessing the extra btu's, breeding more suitable food sources, changing how we build etc.

The hot air of greenhouse gas is a political smokescreen for a treaty which allows China and India (which have been bought up by large multinational corporations) to thrive, while the developed world is put at disadvantage.

We do have a problem, however. And the good old USA must accept much blame. It isn't global warming, it's global WASTE. We invented it. We marketed it. Our themesong-- "I'd like to teach the world to waste, to THROW OUT EVERYTHING!"

And, all the stuff we throw out IS the pollution.Excessive packaging, inefficent use of energy, oversized cars, mass transit, hirise buildings, destroying existing structures because we worship the false god "new", wasted food caused by speculation, wasted time--you name it, we do it, and export it!

Recycling isn't enough. We must not accept or buy wasteful products, procedures and services in the first place, and demand corporate responsibility, not sale and trading of phony-baloney "carbon credits".

The real inconvenient truth no one seems to grasp is that Al "chanticleer" Gore, and his filmaking buddy Guggenheim are spoiled rich kids whose families made the money they are spending to promote themselves by such "sensitive" activities as strip mining, exploiting ignorant underground miners etc. Had they gone to college and seen the light, then renounced the ill-gotten gains and lived in 3 bedroom tract houses (Tripper Gore shopping at K-mart? lol!), that would be one thing---but they aren't giving up anything. They expect the rest of us to do that.

So, cherish the earth, and remember which road is paved with good intentions.Follow the money trail. Ask "who really benefits?" Think critically and analytically. A COMPUTER MODEL IS NOT REALITY, any more than a special effect in a movie is really happening. Be sure what you're doing will truly have positive results. And repeat after me, "no bag, thank you".