Two TV series, “Years of Living Dangerously” by National Geographic and “Blue Planet II” by BBC America, deal with the consequences of our lifestyles on our planet, and how the decisions politicians make affect the environment.
A segment of “Years” dealt with the frustration the Defense Department has with politicians refusing to provide funding for climate change study and the “greening” of our military. DOD considers climate change a threat to national security. A Republican justified his denial of funding by saying, “Climate change is not our enemy.”
On “Blue Planet II,” the narrator asked a marine biologist, “If you could tell humanity to do one thing to help our oceans, what would it be?” The answer was that we need to move to renewable energy immediately. The use of fossil fuels was the primary cause of ocean acidification and warmer water temperatures. But our leaders want to open up more coastlines, national monuments and wildlife refuges to oil drilling and to resurrect a dying coal industry.
Many politicians do not listen to their constituents or to science. Charleston County Council recently held a public hearing on the use of the greenbelt funds. The split had been 70 percent for preserving rural lands and 30 percent for urban land.
Most people who attended this meeting wanted to keep the 70-30 split. But County Council voted for a 50-50 split.
Why do you waste your and the public’s time to hold these “hearings” when you don’t “hear” what the people say?
Government officials at all levels are a threat to the natural systems we rely on because they refuse to protect them. A friend recently said she doesn’t worry about nature anymore. When we’re gone, she said, nature will come back with a vengeance and repair the damage we have inflicted upon her. I hope our politicians hear these warnings before it’s too late for all of us.
Patricia A. Luck