Monday, April 22, 2013

Few Reasons to Celebrate Earth Day

Deforestation rages in Colombia.
(Photo from Flickr.)
A TransMilenio bus on its way up the 'Environmental Axis'
celebrates Earth Day by blasting out smoke.
A few years ago TM won an award for reducing
greenhouse gas emissions.
Today was Earth Day, but it went by pretty much unnoticed except for some talk on the radio about recycling and a ride by naked cyclists painted green.

Meanwhile, deforestation rages on: El Tiempo reports that, the way things are going, the Amazon
jungle will be nearly gone in 40 years. That will not only accelerate climate change, but also destroy the lives of millions of people and drive countless plants and animals to extinction.

The number of cars and other vehicles in Colombia is booming, Colombia has huge areas of biodiverse jungle and mountains mapped out for oil and mining development, and it's looking at the possibility of building a huge oil pipeline from the Venezuelan border across the country to the Pacific coast to ship Venezuelan crude to China.

I'm afraid that prospects for stopping global warming and saving Colombia's biodiversity could hardly be worse.

The Amazon covers 40% of Colombia's territory and is why Colombia is considered a megadiverse nation.

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours


Andrew Scott said...

Very depressing but accurate. Rampant deforestation continues at a frightening rate. Last month, the UK's Ecosystem Markets Task Force laughably argued that nature benefits from the harvesting of timber. Last week, the European Emissions Trading System collapsed due to political intervention. Therefore, there will be no market for carbon and no incentive to reduce our fossil fuel usage. The permafrost in the Northern Hemisphere is melting faster than experts previously believed, resulting in more heat-trapping carbon in the atmosphere. The future looks bleak.

Miguel said...

yes, it is depressing. Global warming's consequences seem to compound the problem, as in the case of permafrost melt.

Without some fundamental change in human behavior or a technological breakethrough, the planet's prospects look very grim.


Stuart Oswald said...

Lets all slit our wrists now...

Andrew Scott said...

Not such a great suggestion from Stuart. The planet is remarkable, stunning, intricate and wonderful. Our lives are fleeting. There must be a sense of responsibility upon current generations as a duty of care to right some of the wrongs of our ancestors. The alternative is a continuing reduction in quality of life for a growing percentage of our population.