When Australia was first colonised, the invaders brought with them their values and attitudes from ‘back home’. They took no account of facts later revealed about Australia’s landscape, soils, flora and fauna, but continued to import familiar varieties into unsuitable conditions.
We need to turn Australia on its head! We also need to recognise the value of caring for land, practiced by our First Nations.
You do not need to clear land to graze cattle and sheep for meat (and profit) when kangaroo meat tastes like a cross between venison and buffalo. In actual fact, the extent to which, world-wide, we rape the earth to make a profit while wasting food on an unimaginable scale, it is small wonder the world is fighting back!
We have vast areas of desert in Australia where no one can live and nothing grows. Yet, by developing solar farms, we could harvest the sunshine! Regular recharging stations, with small shopping centre facilities, could mean that electric cars could travel long distances, recharging both vehicle and body at intervals.
With all its sunshine, supplemented by wind power in suitable locations and backed up by batteries, Australia could be a regular powerhouse with not a plume of smoke in sight.
The other thing which Australia overdoes is re-inventing the wheel. Suitable research of overseas developments would enable us to develop much more effective recycling processes.
We have two really major issues yet to be dealt with.
As a matter of urgency, we must deal with our polluting waste before the damage done destroys habitat and its inhabitants. This needs instant attention.
But, simultaneously, we need to stop manufacturers from creating the waste that is generated through all the cardboard, polystyrene, plastic etc involved in packaging goods. When the end result of a process is to destroy life then it can hardly be classified as a convenience.
As a child in the UK, I remember biscuits and sweets being weighed in the scales and tipped in a paper bag. The shopkeeper used a scoop but wore no plastic gloves and we all survived! Sometimes we go overboard with cleanliness.
(An aside: – I remember a very cute cartoon by Mabel Lucie Atwell which hung on our bathroom wall in my childhood. It depicted a little girl with extremely grubby knees, standing with a sponge and soap in a bowl of water! The caption read: “Mother says cleanliness is next to godliness, but I say it is next to impossible!”)
Humour notwithstanding – it seems ironic that in our endeavours to save lives, we run the risk of destroying them.
In the near future I shall be meeting up with a group of like-minded people in my locality to sort out a program to research developments elsewhere which are dealing effectively with waste recycling, which, in turn, we could then recommend to our Environmental Protection Authority for discussion and implementation by government.
If anyone in your immediate family is still under 20, then you surely have a personal interest in ensuring that they will be able to survive in a world affected by global warming. Each group that starts working in this way could start a snowball effect – which we desperately need!
To me, it seems that the people whom we have elected, particularly those in Canberra, have more interest in retaining power and lining their own pockets than in ensuring a future for our children. We have to force them to take action – and, together, we can do it!
We do not need to go to the bloody lengths of the French Revolution! But we most certainly do need to let all out governments know that they are far from doing the right thing by us – and make them take notice!
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