"We are at the point that there’s nothing untouched."

 


Those who have stood vigil at a love one's death bed know the agony of loss. 

University of Montana entomologist, Diana Six, says a constant haunting depression has taken over her life.

"I don’t think people realize that climate change is not just a loss of ice. It’s all the stuff that’s dependent on it. The ice is really just the canary in the coalmine. To have 97, 98 degrees in Glacier national park for days on end is insane. This is not just some fluke.

“Life doesn’t just deal with this. When I went up Glacier with my students a few weeks ago, the flowers were curling up. At some of the lower elevations, glacier lilies were shriveled, lupins didn’t even open. The flowers should extend for another three weeks and they’re already gone. Any insects or birds that depend upon them, like bees or hummingbirds are in trouble, their food is gone. Bird populations have just baked.

“There have been total losses of a lot of baby birds this year. You see these ospreys and eagles sitting on top of the trees in their nests and those young, they just can’t take the heat. Year after year of that and you lose your birds.

“People seem to think of extinctions as some silent, painless statistic. It’s not. You look at birds that can no longer find fish because they’ve moved too far off shore. They’re emaciated, they’re starving to death. We are at the point that there’s nothing untouched.

"I was no longer cataloging life and finding ways to prevent ecosystems from reaching tipping points. I had actually hit my own tipping point. Somewhere along the way, I had gone from being an ecologist to a coroner. I am no longer documenting life. I’m describing loss, decline, death. And that is what is accounting for my kind of overwhelming sense of grief.

“This is what really brought home to me that my entire job has changed. I don’t like my new job, but I can’t quit. Even if I quit being a professor and doing research, I’m always going to be a coroner now."

Here, on my doorstep, we're greeting climate migrants, climate refugees every day. They arrive in the form of once rarely seen fish species, marine mammals (whales, transient orca, dolphins, seals, sea lions), even birds - pelicans, all fleeing dangerously warming southern waters.  They're the lucky ones. There are no fences and roads to block their escape.

I know I've been banging this drum pretty hard lately but there's an election in the offing and we need to start thinking straight. Time is not on our side. We can't afford political leadership that treats this climate catastrophe as an afterthought, something to throw a couple of billion dollars at as if that was going to make any meaningful difference.

Comments

  1. "there's an election in the offing and we need to start thinking straight"

    Well your previous thoughts on this years electoral situation SEEM to range between spoiled ballots or voting Lib. So?

    Perhaps thinking in curves would suit us better at this late stage?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think I wrote that I would be voting Lib, NPoV. That hasn't been in the cards since the LPC expunged progressive policy from their platform to become a truly full throated petro-party. What my point was that, for most Canadians, it comes down to Liberal and the other party that's even worse. And, as you know, that's how Canadians vote. We also tolerate a system where a party gets about a third of the vote and a majority government yet we pretend we're still a democracy.

      As for me, unless something changes within the Green Party, it'll be the spoiled ballot option.

      This summer should have been an eye-opener, an epiphany for the electorate. That, however, hasn't happened and Canada will have to deal with the consequences.

      Politics is not going to prepare the country to weather the storm setting in. It isn't. Wherever possible, government will continue to kick this can down the road.

      The gravest threat ever to face our nation, and the world, will be unmet. Most of us have forgotten the raison d'etre of the Kyoto Protocol of 1997. I haven't. Kyoto recognized that man-made global warming could, if left unchecked, trigger something far worse - runaway climate change. Back then we were open about what that would mean. It was imperative that we arrested anthropogenic climate change.

      1997 doesn't sound that long ago but it's closing in on a quarter century. Canada set one aspirational target after another, failing to meet any of them. We never punished our leaders for their betrayal at the only place we could, at the ballot box. I can't think of any country where the voting public did much different.

      Perhaps if we had electoral reform and a restoration of democracy the public might have demanded better of those soliciting our votes. If only.

      How you vote is irrelevant. The day after election day it will be business as usual, uninterrupted. When the vote becomes irrelevant so does the voting public. We've demanded no better.

      I'm afraid Diana Six is right.

      Delete
    2. It just strikes me odd that this 'call to action' in your post:

      "I know I've been banging this drum pretty hard lately but there's an election in the offing and we need to start thinking straight. Time is not on our side. We can't afford political leadership that treats this climate catastrophe as an afterthought, something to throw a couple of billion dollars at as if that was going to make any meaningful difference."

      can be written by the same writer that responded above & defended casting spoiled ballots this tipping-point election
      .
      Perhaps there are two of you fighting for keyboard time? ;-)

      Delete
    3. I'm not going to respond to that, NPoV. If you just want to be chippy, take a hike.

      Delete
  2. If every other voter spoiled their ballot
    and the candidate caste their single vote for themselves
    in canada
    that is a majority and a mandate

    that you can express your values and choice "democratically" at the polls
    is one of the most promoted delusions
    and socially accepted conspiracies of all times

    representative democracy is engineered against the people
    a sham contest to pension off a few more elites
    while syphoning off the wealth

    it is painful
    but all you can do is watch and document
    because from these unheard of blogging backwaters
    about zero readers have influence
    its just self amusement while the world burns

    ReplyDelete

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