Friday, January 05, 2007

Dehydrating planet...



Remember those fantasies you used to have as a kid - the ones where the oceans dried up and you were able to walk along the ocean floor and find all the sunken treasure and other interesting stuff that had fallen into Davy Jones' Locker? Don't hold your breath, but don't give up on the idea entirely.

As climates become indisputably warmer and wetter, the big question is will evaporation exceed precipitation or vice versa? Many high altitude lakes are experiencing all time high water levels because of the increased snow melt that warmer weather brings. But in less mountainous areas, the opposite is true. Lakes and other inland water bodies are evaporating away. Even in places where the warm weather brings about an marked increase in rainfall, the lakewater temperature, even at bottom depths, has gone up enough to accelerate evaporation beyond the rain's replenishing powers. Less water means greater concentrations of salt (if present) and pollution (most likely present). If you hear a fish coughing on your next camping trip, you have no one to blame but yourself.

Without sounding too much like Al Gore, I can not suppress my personal alarm any more. I believe we've made it too easy to destroy our own home. A radical shift in our collective perception of Nature is what we need. Our connection to it and impact upon it. I believe they used to call that education, before the media co-opted our minds... Speaking of which, in the great new film, Children of Men, set twenty years in the future, we see a cold, cruel, corrupt world (which is aesthetically a million times more interesting that what we've got now, but that's another story). Power struggles fear and myopia (not to mention a literally barren future) have brought man's tyrannical instincts to the foreground. The Earth chokes underneath. Only the hippies get it right - hang loose, have fun, fuck authority, love your friends, love your planet. Hippies always get a bad rap on account of their scrappy habits and frizzy hair, but this film does a good job of reminding us of their strengths. Michael Caine is fantastic.

OK where was I... Urbanization and sprawl of the (sub)urban worldview have estranged us from the massive living organism beneath our feet - the one that keeps us all from imploding in the vacuum of space. Time for a new understanding, a new relationship, a new action plan. Forget the labels, forget the stereotypes. Hang the greedy idiots who are enabling our planet's cancer and our own self-asphyxiation. We use the economy as an excuse to destroy ourselves. How about economies that serve life rather than enslave it? I know that's just too damn rosey a notion for many of you to take, but trust me, even if the planet were given a 100% clean bill of health, we would still find dozens of brilliant ways to manifest the evil we hold so dear.

(this amazing photo comes from here)

2 Comments:

Blogger ShastriX said...

Quite a contrast to this.

3:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

are you serious? go ahead and expound by punching in meaningless words on a blog...

action, baby. not words

9:29 PM  

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