OPINION: Burning Eden and Creating Hell – One Last Gluttonous Orgy?

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At the outset I wish to apologize if any of the photos included here upset or offend. They upset me and some have been in my mental slide show for a long time now … way back to the atom bombs dropping on Japan and others from the many wars and mass killing that have occurred during my life. But now we have reached a new level of depravity that has me deeply disturbed. We are literally burning Eden and creating Hell. And we are doing this in the name of the God Energy and his master Mammon.

In recent years, I’ve been actively involved in fighting the LNG Terminals that have been proposed for Passamaquoddy Bay on the basis of the unique and important environmental qualities of the Quoddy Region and the economic losses that will be incurred by the presence of heavy industry in this special place. I’ve also spoken out about nuclear power in Fundy for essentially the same reason. But, frankly, I haven’t extended this to other developments in Fundy or elsewhere. Oh, maybe a comment now and again, but really, I’ve avoided some of the bigger fights because I am … well … tired actually. I have been engaged in this sort of thing  for a long, long, time and the cogs of business keep turning and we keep consuming the resources of our strange and beautiful planet at a ridiculous rate. I didn’t think that we could actually contemplate an “end” in my lifetime. But now I wonder.

The shots of children dead and dying are particularly hard to take. The one showing a young child being buried after the Bhopal industrial tragedy in India, the many, many photos of the children of Chernobyl, and recently, an old shot of a dying child and a waiting vulture bring home the truth about starvation in Africa.

But it’s more than the heart rending human suffering, the photos of clear cut and slash-and-burn forests in the Amazon and here at home, the scars you can see on Google Earth wherever you look and recently the disaster at Fukushima. There are many, many reasons to be concerned about this nuclear accident wherever you live on this planet. But it was a recent aerial that shows a boiling sea in front of the Fukushima reactors that stirred my inner conscience. Is this a result of radiation strikes, fuel release, or is it truly the meltdown; a China Syndrome taking place before our very eyes. And then I saw again the aerial of shale gas drilling sites that have taken over the landscape in Wyoming. This, at about the same time as the Conservative government of my home province of New Brunswick, Canada announced a 5 year extension for the exploration for shale gas.

So what is it anyway. Is this like we’re all starving to death, but we can survive to better times if we budget our food … but instead we decide to eat it all in one last gluttonous orgy? Across North America the new gold rush for shale gas and more nuclear power is on and everywhere the gleam is in their eyes. Get it out, sell it, turn it into energy, freeze it into LNG and export it – build new pipelines and fill up the old ones. “Damn the torpedoes. Sell as fast as we can before the world comes to an end. I want mine! I want mine!” Greed may never have seen this level in all of history. With the exception of the first nuclear bomb tests and drops, we have never before gambled with the very existence of the earth.

In our ignorance and greed we will turn this Eden into a living Hell! “There is a sufficiency in the world for man’s need but not for man’s greed.”  ~Mohandas K. Gandhi


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