Sunday, September 21, 2014

Keep On Marching for Mother Earth

In London, and a few hours later in New York, and at several different times throughout the day today, people took to the streets for the People's Climate March.  There is a summit at the United Nations on Tuesday where world leaders will give one day to address a problem that is plaguing us every day: greenhouse gas emissions and the gradual warming of "this fragile Earth our island home." There isn't likely to be any policy made at this summit, but it is designed to renew momentum for real change and adopting strategies to cut the carbon dioxide, methane, and CFCs that are turning this place into a cosmic convection oven.

There was no organized demonstration in Tallahassee, so I walked down to Cascades Park to take this picture at sunrise, which was roughly the time people would be stepping off for the march in London.  At this hour of the day, when the rest of the city is sleeping off its FSU football hangover, you can hear the birds and you can get into a rhythm of quiet contemplation... until the train shows up.

A perfect metaphor, I think, for this whole issue of climate change.  In the balance hangs the beauty of our planet, the water that sustains us, the trees and plants which help to keep us breathing. But all of that is danger of getting run over by our continued greed and the need for more energy which, right now, means more fossil fuels.  And as the train whistle grew louder, drowning out the sounds of nature, it was a reminder that our man-made needs collide with preseving our Earth.

I have heard several people around here express their despair over the situation with climate change.  One of my friends is a scientist who, after asking a few times for a meeting with the Governor of Florida, finally got one... after the Governor's opponent met with him and other scientists first.  The Governor sat quietly through the meeting with the five professors from campuses in the Sunshine State who were impressing upon Governor Rick Scott to take action now to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases being released, and the very real danger that the rise of ocean waters will result in Florida slowly disappearing. Imagine the tourism slogans then: Come to Miami, the New Atlantis!

During the whole meeting, Scott just sat there with a weak grin plastered on his face.  Apparently, the only question he asked was about job creation. Not about solar energy, or beach erosion; job creation.  And this is when I think I can hear the earth sighing beneath the weight of inaction.

I hope that the world leaders took notice of those who were demonstrating, and finally do begin in earnest to address this issue in time for some action to happen in 2015. The planet is counting on it.

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