Why are we OK with destroying the planet? 106



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This is one question that can spark a lot of debate but truly, why are we OK with destroying the planet? Of course that’s an assumption – most of us don’t want to destroy the planet – but do we care enough? Or have we dismissed it and put caring for our planet in the proverbial “too-hard basket”?

First of all, we need to look at how we’re destroying the planet – because you cannot deny that it’s happening. Just this week, there were a number of articles about how wet wipes are contributing to our world’s waste issue, much how disposable nappies have. Then there’s the deforestation of the Amazon jungle (as much as 20 per cent has been cut down), mining, the use of fuel cars despite electric technology – the list goes on. But isn’t this just how it goes? Is it too much effort to preserve rather than destroy?

We have the ability to drive electric cars and reduce air pollution yet the big oil companies and countries would be affected. Hemp is one of the world’s strongest and most useful materials yet we do not take advantage of it despite it growing from the ground. Instead, we live in a world that values greed. Are we just a pawn in the game? Or do we have a say?

Our government here in Australia places very little emphasis on the environment and how we, the average person, can make a difference. Gone are the days of environmental ads encouraging us to recycle, or even the Channel Seven program ‘The World Around Us’. Gone are water restrictions from capital cities despite their effectiveness in reducing water consumption. In Southeast Queensland pre-drought, the average water usage per person per household was 240L, and after the drought it was reduced down to 180L, though during the drought it was at a low of 140L, thanks to government campaigns and subsidies such as a little timer you could put in the bathroom to time a four-minute shower, and the free pack that included a water-saving shower head. But now, nearly 10 years on, no such restrictions apply and people are back to their water-wasting ways. We’re also dangerously close to losing our precious Great Barrier Reef forever.

Even Sir David Attenborough said that humans are threatening their own existence and that of other species by using up the world’s resources. “We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now,” he told the Radio Times. Do you agree with him?

So what can we do? In Canada, the City of Vancouver have put a complete ban on food scraps in the bin and have started to penalise people for throwing out too much. This enforcement has reduced the landfill and has forced accountability on everyday citizens and to think before they buy. Then there’s the girl who didn’t throw out anything for a whole year – she used recyclable containers and made a conscientious effort to reduce her carbon footprint – can you imagine what it would be like if each one of us made an effort to reduce our footprint? Perhaps the government wouldn’t have to impose then abolish a carbon tax.

Consider this: we as a race care less and less for the possessions we buy, and are disposing of them more quickly than ever. Yet the raw materials required to produce them, the pollution created in their manufacturing, the infrastructure and noise and burning of fuel needed to transport them are destroying a natural world that is much more beautiful than anything we could possibly purchase.

If every single person started to reduce his or her waste, it could change the world. But would you want to do it? Would it take a government program to make you take notice?

Tell us your thoughts below.

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  1. we are a plague on the earth and like cockroaches we keep breeding and bring more of our species in to use the Earth’s resources. I think the planet is sick of us, and here in Australia we removed the only plan we had for Global warming, whatever happened to Abbott’s Green army? gone with the wind..just more lies

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  2. A big and growing problem that we are constantly reminded about. Every single one of us is able to do their bit towards halting or at least slowing this damage to our world. It begins at home with common sense practices and attitude. It does not mean being frugal to the point of depravation; it just means being smart.

  3. Global warming/climate change is a cyclical event. A CSIRO report based on soil samples proved it. The report was published around the mid 90s and also predicted that after this current ‘wet’ period, we are in for a 100 (or was it a 1,000) year drought. Funnily enough, it seems the report has been conveniently lost.
    Once the earth gets sick of the parasite known as ‘man’ it will get rid of us. Of course, wars were invented to assist with population control. 🙂

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    • Technology can’t halt a natural event, same as King Canute couldn’t turn back the tide.
      Notice the push against chlorinated hydrocarbons isn’t mentioned anymore? It seems that the eruption of Mt Pinotubo put more chlorinated hydrocarbons into the atmosphere that mankind has ever made – or is ever likely to make.
      I’m a big fan of electric vehicles but they are sadly out of my price range.

    • sell your car stop using electricity you dont need fridges washing machines airconditioners ect .walk everywhere ..stop working your business is a polluter .CAN ANYONE SEE HOW STUPID THAT IS we will never go backwards ..we must either learn to live in todays world or go back to the caves .your choice

    • No bloody way Graeme! 🙂 I’m a fan of electric vehicles because they are quiet and should be cheap to run. The reason I like them quiet is so they don’t attract unwanted attention – like when you’re speeding. 😀

    • The biggest polluters I have seen were in Malaysia, their waterways were polluted with garbage, Malacca straits there is a channel for ships and up to that channel it is only a few feet deep because of the muck in the sea. You collect the garbage and place it in black plastic bags whilst traveling by train only to have the carriage attendant throw it out the door into the jungle. And so it goes on…..just saying


  5. If the author of this article has any children then they are a hypocrite! Over population of the planet by humans is the only problem. We should not be funding ways to help and encourage reproduction. We are the only animal on the planet that does not self regulate our population.

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  6. We all need to play our part in caring ofr this wonderful planet. We won’t get a second chance, once things are gone they’re gone.

  7. Yes humanity is worse than any other plague years ago sickness culled and kept our numbers down but now thanks to modern medicine man is living far too long and in the procesd killing our planet

  8. There is still the same amount of CO2 on the earth as there ever was. It is necessary for the growth of trees, grasses etc. We have the balance wrong. We need to plant more trees! This would balance the atmospheric chemicals again. Humans are not responsible for the volcanoes spewing CO2 into the atmosphere. The world is growing old and I doubt if anything we do will change the weather. It is cyclic. However, I do think we should keep the place tidy and stop dumping plastics etc into the waterways.

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    • There are other tragedies, but over the past 3 centuries, deforestation is one of the biggest curses against the future of our kids. Throw away items and plastics are at the next level along with destruction of animal species. I agree that CO2 is a much lesser issue because mid ocean rifts and volcanoes emit more CO2 and sulphurous gasses than one can ever measure. Even old R12 refrigerant gasses are worse than CO2. And even if sea levels rise and lower landforms go under, other places like Greenland expose habited areas from eons long ago. Global cooling is more dangerous than warming.

    • Ocean warming is the worst threat, as far as I can see. Apparently followed by the ocean becoming more acidic from CO2 absorption (Catalyst 24/3/15).

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