By Nathaniel Batchelder
OKLAHOMA CITY, OK – As frightening as is the evolving threat of COVID-19, greater dangers looming before humanity are the consequences of unresolved global warming and climate change.
The Biology degree I earned 48 years ago awakened me to environmental degradation caused by humanity’s growing population, demand for living space and agriculture, consumption of resources, production of wastes, and fantasy that never-ending expansion was possible on a finite earth.
The first Earth Day, April 22, 1972, was celebrated by millions concerned about Earth issues even then.
Ironically, while eco-threats have become more dire, public and political concern has seemed to fade. Indeed, America has a President and Vice President who campaigned on the claim that global warming was “a hoax and a myth.”
The IPCC – Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change – was founded 32 years ago to assemble scientific evidence into regular reports to world governments. The IPCC’s latest report states that there are only 12 years left in which to implement programs and policies to drastically reduce emissions of the gases warming the atmosphere, or else global warming will become unstoppable. That was two years ago.
Voters in November will choose the next President, House of Representatives, and a third of US Senators. Of America’s two major political parties, one advocates doing little or nothing about the environment. The other party is home to members across the political spectrum, some supporting the Green New Deal, and others who say, “Not too fast.”
Mother Earth awaits the outcome.
Nathaniel Batchelder is a regular contributor to The City Sentinel, director of the Peace House in Oklahoma City, and member of Sierra Club Oklahoma Chapter.