When I sat down to write this time I was in a dilemma, as to which topic to choose. With the world catching up to the fact that climate change is irreversible, we are trying to mitigate and adapt to these changes by reducing carbon emissions, introducing policies for green energy and protecting our ecosystems. Naturally, the number of topics that I had in hand were innumerous. Climate Change/Energy is such a vast field that I personally spend many hours pondering on what should I choose this time to write about. Upon discussing this with my friends one of them very casually suggested me to write about how we got here instead of dipping into the same old pool of choosing a specific topic to escalate. As much as I try to impart knowledge, facts and empower people through my articles and stories, I was intrigued by this idea of looking back at the past (just don’t stare for too long).
Climate Change is not a process that started in the last few decades. Our planet’s climate has been changing since the time it was created. In the beginning, the atmosphere was as toxic as Mars and now we roll down the car window and breathe in air without getting intoxicated. So of course, the climate on this planet has been changing for a long time but real question is when did it start becoming a global crisis? Although many scientists have different theories on when the change became crucial, but as far as the facts go climate change was officially declared as a global emergency in the late 1980s. That is when the “world is going to end” fad came in, twice, around the 90s and again in 2012. The red flag was given to us by the government and researchers about 4 decades ago. Today we stand in a position where we are trying hard to slow down this inevitable process.
” Over usage of the resources which the Earth provided to its residents is destroying itself.”
I would be surprised if you didn’t think, if the climate is always changing and this was inevitable why are we panicking about it? Is it just because we moved the timeline ahead by few decades? Maybe a century? Well, that is indeed one of the things to be worried about but more than that, imagine this scenario, where you decided to make lentil soup for dinner and you put the desired quantity of lentils in a cooking pot. Now imagine if the lentils decided to multiply within and in order to be cooked at a faster rate because of its increasing population, the lentils decide to absorb more heat and started devising advanced technology to help them cook faster. In a normal scenario they would have cooked at the standard rate even with increasing population and the pot would accommodate. But in this case not only are most of the lentils undercooked, but the heat and the pressure inside the pot is so high that it eventually bursts open, burning the lentils. This is exactly what is happening on this planet right now. Over usage of the resources which the Earth provided to its residents is destroying itself. Its not just that we moved the timeline ahead, but in the lifetime course of a planet if it where to be uninhabitable again in a few thousand years, it is now going to be destroyed to a point that the planet might just become a huge clump of asteroid. Now is that so bad? Yes, it is!
“…we got too greedy. Innovation is growth indeed! But should it have been at the cost of our lands, homes, future generations?“
We have extracted so much fossil fuels to produce fuel and gas. We have stripped the nature of our oxygen level maintaining trees and aquatic creatures. We have practiced over fishing, poaching and unethical practices on our ecosystems. We put a man on the moon, found an earth-like planet and are now aiming to go to mars, but failed to acknowledge what this planet gave us while we walked on it. Over usage of everything is as bad as under usage of the same, that is why humans studied the concept of ecosystem. We have millions of MBA students and engineers churning out of expensive IVEY league institutions every year mastering in supply chain, maintenance, operations, marketing, business analysis and resource management, and nobody could put into practice the art of maintaining our ecosystem? Yet, today the native tribes and rural folks are doing more than these degree graduates do to restore what we took from Earth. Where did we go wrong? Should we have stopped at the invention of the wheel? Should we have continued to live in caves and practice farming? Should we have stopped at the point when kings ruled and never asked for freedom or democracy? Though these questions do not have a definitive answer, we are sure about the fact that we got too greedy. Innovation is growth indeed! But should it have been at the cost of our lands, homes, future generations? Will the future generation be able to witness the beautiful orchid tree you passed by today morning while jogging? Or the most beautiful clear water blue colored lake you visited last summer? Those mountains in the Alps, you have always hoped to conquer? Are we too late to save them? Will they exist in a few decades’ time? Ask yourself again, what went wrong? Can human greed cause human destruction? When we first noticed the rising temperatures, rising sea levels, uneven weather conditions, frequent natural disasters, we had started observing the repercussions of our actions. The damage had been done long back. The world needs to slow down the pressure that’s building in the pot.
These are indeed some bewildering questions we have no answers to, or at the least we know it all started with disrespect and greed. Now is not the time to ponder on what happened in the past, but like every other horror film where the only way to get the dark entity off your back is to investigate its past that caused it to haunt, we need to look back to identify the root cause of not just the problem we know currently but also of the horrors yet to come. Without further details into the horror cinema metaphor, I leave you with this. We need to do our part to help slow down climate change at an individual, societal or organizational level and the time is NOW. Adios!
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The image used for cover can be licensed for free from Pixabay