Planet Earth is 46 hundered million years old. If we scale this inconceivably timespan down to a more manageable 46 years, then modern human beings have been around for four hours, and the Industrial Revolution began a minutes ago.During 60 seconds of biological time, humankind have multiplied their numbers to plague proportions, ransacked the planet for fuels and raw materials, and caused the extinctionf countless species of animals and plants.However brief our lifetime on Earth, it brings with it responsibilities, not just to other humans , but to the abundance of life forms with which we share this evolutionary moment.Since the late 1960s, it has become customary for skeptics to accuse environmentalists of permanently crying "Wolf !" Why, these skeptics ask, is it all so urgent now, given the relative ease eith which the seems to have withstood most of the damage inflicted on it over the last 20 years?What does the Earth need tobe "saved" from?
It is often easier to deny the truth than to confront it. Let's be thankful that we have indeed got through the last 20 years with no more than a handful of appalling environmental disasters, but let's never forget that for millions of people, their environment has already collapsed, as witnessed by the huge increase in "environmental refugees" - all those who have been forced to leave their homelands by drought, deforestation, and other environmental crises.The fact that the last 20 years have been characterized more by progressive decline than by dizzy environmental collapse hardly seems a cause for rejoicing.At the same time, I do believe that the foundations for a more just, compassionate and sustainable future are now being laid.
Some of this fundation work has a very high profile, resonantly in the fine speeches of world leaders, adovocated passionately by the massed groups of environmental and development organizations, amplified with increasing authority by the world's media. Despite the media's tendency to leap from one one fashionable cause to the next (from world hunger to AIDS to the environment), it would be narrow-minded to deny their part in increasing environmental awareness. It is easier to be "green" today than ever before.
But most of the foundation work is being painstakingly put together at the grass-roots with no media attention - reflected in the concerns and lifestyle choices of millions of people who know what they owe to themselves and to the future.It is this grass-roots base that leads me to believe that the current level of environmental activity will not fade away, but will steadily strengthen.The signs of hope are multiplying, reinforcing the mounting pressure for new approaches and lasting change.

投稿日時 - 2014-09-24 00:36:52




地球が誕生してから46億年になる。この途方もなく膨大な長さの時間を、便宜的に46年として計れば、現代人の出現は4時間前となり、産業革命が起こったのは1分前となる。この60秒の間に、人はその数を異常なまでに増やし、燃料と原料を奪って地球を荒らし、無数の種の動植物を絶滅させた。地球上で我々の一生がどんなに短かろうが、人が生きていくことで、我々は、他の人間に対してだけでなく、我々とともに進化している無数の生物に対して責任を負っている。 1960年代後半から、環境保護論者は常に「狼が来たぞ!」と叫んでいると、懐疑論者が批難し続けている。なぜ彼らの言うことがみな、今そんなに緊急なのかと、懐疑論者は疑問を投げかける。狼が来たと言ってから20年以上も、地球はふりかかるダメージのほとんどに耐え、比較的安定しているからである。いったい何から地球が救われる必要があると言うのか?


投稿日時 - 2014-09-24 01:48:17



投稿日時 - 2014-10-02 13:21:06