Drought, fires and ScoMo…
I own 1,500 acres of land at Bindi, in East Gippsland, Victoria on which I’m planting a large carbon sink forest; a multi million dollar investment towards helping the environment – air, soil, water and animals.
At the time of writing there is a large bush fire about 300m from my northern fence line, but thankfully it is heading away from my property. That said, a small wind change and everything is on the line. It is a scary, anxious time.
Normally a catastrophe such as humongous deadly bush fires would bring the whole country together. In some respects it has… generous donations of clothing, food and water, and money. Yet reading social media posts, there is also a worrying amount of division about the cause of these fires, and what we should do once they’ve been extinguished.
Here’s what I know….
What Caused The Fires?
These fires were started as a result of nature (e.g. lightning strikes), and/or human intervention (e.g. cigarettes tossed out of windows, arsonists, back burning gone wrong, power line failures, etc.).
Why Are These Fires Particularly Bad?
Bush fires are a part of life in Australia. Our forests even depend on fire for survival. So why are these fires even worse than normal? Despite what some people claim, the answer is not singularly a lack of back burning (i.e. fuel reduction). The land around my property has been substantially cleared for grazing, yet there is a threat to my property without trees, or built up fuel.
The answer is a combination of the following: extremely dry conditions (we had 2mm of rain in Omeo in Dec 19, compared with 40mm in Dec 2018), extremely low air humidity, and under-resourcing of key staff and boots on the ground workers by successive state and federal governments over many years.
It’s a simple fact that starting with Jeff Kennett in the 1990s, in Victoria there has been a dramatic reduction in the number of staff overseeing and managing the state forests. In 2019 Daniel Andrews made a budget conscious decision to delay the arrival of fire fighting aircraft. The federal government under funded fire fighting equipment, blaming it as a state issue. And on it goes… Governments were too worried about surpluses, and not worried enough about safety.
Are We To Blame?
What’s caused the climate to change? A shift in the earth’s tilt? Solar flares? ScoMo? Trump?
Why is it so hard for us to wholeheartedly agree that cutting down a few trees will cause soil erosion, raise problems with salinity and destroy habitat and environment for wildlife, yet believe we can cut down a billion trees and it won’t impact our planet, or our homes?
Or how can we know that burning plastic in backyard incinerators (as was customary in the 1970’s, but now outlawed!) and releasing clouds of toxic black smoke was a bad outcome, but we look away at the trillions of tonnes of black smoke we happily emit by burning fossil fuels under the name of progress?
Hello! It’s cause and effect. Not effect and cause.
The chemistry is undisputed and pretty straightforward. The carbon that is stored in trees, coal (i.e. fossil fuels), etc. changes from a solid to a gas when it is burned. This chemical reaction will result in change. Enough change, and the consequences become bigger and more evident.
Think CFCs… back in the 1980s, when the ozone layer was wasting away, we identified CFCs as the problem and eventually banned them worldwide. In the beginning though, there were deniers, sceptics, industry with vested interest because it was cheaper to use CFCs than alternatives, etc. etc. In the end though, we finally got moving on a global scale and a few decades later the ozone layer is regenerating.
History repeats, this time its carbon dioxide…
Now I don’t know for certain if the way we use and manage our natural resources has been the entire cause, but surely 200 years of systemic human induced chemical reactions will impact our environment.
Yes, yes, yes… it has been hotter, colder, wetter, drier, etc. in ages past. But the rate of change was previously over eons, not decades, years or months. In NSW, there was snow in early December, and devastating fires too. Think of it this way… we’ve hit the ‘environmental’ beehive with a stick, and are now wondering why the buzzing has increased.
What about the argument that what we do in Australia doesn’t matter? True! It probably doesn’t on a world scale, but just because all your friends are high on emitting carbon doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to get clean and sober. Maybe our actions can encourage them to lift their game too.
So, What Should We Do?
It won’t be easy. Or simple. And it will take time because we’re used to our convenient standard of living in Australia, but can we afford to do nothing? Is this a risk we’re willing to take? Have your say by leaving a comment below.
Got something to say? Post a comment...
You must be logged in to post a comment.
Steve, I feel more educated after reading this. You’ve brought together so many different angles and helped me understand the situation so much better now. Thank you!
It’s a complicated discussion Jane, so my analysis is pretty superficial, but in doing so (and keeping it basic) I am trying to cut through the spin and fog and bring it back to commonsense. Happy 2020!
As usual, Steve, you have an uncanny ability to put complicated matters into simple language that just makes sense. How is it possible that the ‘leaders’ of our world can’t understand? Clearly selfishness and greed are the only answers. Our youth will continue to stir the pot of revolution until the power brokers are thrown out and change can occur. Thank you for all that you do. Have a great day. Cheers
Thanks for your comment. We live in interesting times, don’t we? It will be fascinating to see what change, if any, the federal government makes as competing political interests collide.
I recall someone telling me that it often takes three generations for change to take root.
The older generation, who are blamed for the problem, stringently disbelieves.
The middle generation seeks to respect their elders (their parents), but not want to seem out of touch with the youth (their children). They have a foot in each camp and are open to new ideas, but hold fast to dogma and need hard proof.
The younger generation, with passion and energy, have little time for the selfish problem makers of the past, and demand change – now! While somewhat noble, they lack the wisdom of older generations and need to be tempered lest they hastily forge forward and make avoidable mistakes.
Presently the older generation has the votes, but the younger generation has the voice. The middle generation are too busy paying for the welfare of the old, and the schooling of the young.
A great description of the the situation as usual Steve.
Nice to hear from you Michelle. I hope all is well. Happy New Year.
As always, appreciate your sensibility and insight. The media has been highlighting bits and pieces and it will be interesting to see what the outcome is from all of this devastation. Given that it started in Qld in Sept but didn’t get really serious attention until the high population areas down south suffered the same fate just shows we don’t have any watchdogs with real teeth to take on the big issues. I address that to federal government.
Hopefully, some of the money that has been donated will go towards planning for management of future threats. We need to recognize that we live in a global community and should be establishing agreements for sharing of expensive resources that are needed for disasters. The earth isn’t that big that we can’t move things around pretty quickly these days.
I believe that saving our planet needs to be more of a grass roots campaign – we all need to start making changes. My kids are certainly encouraging me!
Good luck with your project and keep up your great work.
Thanks for your comment Joan. Happy 2020!
Well said Steve, I couldn’t support your position more.
Cheers Matthew. Happy 2020.
Well I suppose I could… it’s a bit of a cop-out or a mis-conception to say ‘I couldn’t support your position more’.. truth is I can find ways of supporting the statement through my actions. I think I’m doing alright with my solar panels and getting a motorbike instead of lumping around all that metal in my car for no point on a day to day basis. Reality is there are always more ways to improve efficiency and sustainability. I’ll keep searching for practical means of reducing my impact. Its not that I want to ‘do’ less, I want to ‘do’ the same or similar things but more efficiently and effectively.
I think the best way forward is simply to talk about it, respectfully.
See my comment earlier about the different generations. We need to respect our elders and bring them along… slowly as they are afraid of change. And give outlets to act for the youngins who have so much passion and energy.
And of course, we need leadership. Sadly, when it comes to politics, you often don’t get leaders, you get politicians. :-O
Definitely sharing this on my FB page Steve. As you describe it i.e. ‘superficial’ but more importantly, ‘cuts through the spin and fog’ which is what most people would like to see. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.
Thanks for making a comment Kerry. Happy 2020.
It is really good to hear someone who is well known for sound economic thinking also apply sound thinking to the very foundations of the economy (and life itself) – the natural environment. It often seems that people who focus on money/financials do so to the exclusion of everything else – and in the short term that works. We now seem to be starting to pay the price for previous short term thinking and short term planning that ignored long term effects.
I suspect it is something to do with long term thinking and long term planning, aka the investor mindset – things have to work in the long term and in the big picture otherwise do not do it. Thank you for applying that long term and big picture mindset to the very foundations of life itself and the very source of everything we have – the natural environment. The more people who do so, the better the long term outcome, the fewer the worse the long term outcome.
You make a really good point about short-term and long-term thinking are not always congruent.
Our short-term political cycles support near term thinking, and populist rather than visionary outcomes. This is our lot in life, especially with career politicians who are more interested in power than people.
Nice Work Steve, good luck with the weather and fire conditions today out at Bindi. Hopefully there can be a positive to come out of all the negatives that this fire season has brought upon us. Maybe we can finally see some real change with the way Governments and people nurture God’s creation.
Thanks Jason. Happy 2020.
I realise your post is about climate change and its consequences, and I broadly agree with you. Climate change is world-wide disaster and government blame shifting won’t help things. We all have responsibility collectively to address whatever aspects of it that we can and there’s not a great deal of point creating wealth in the context of having to live in a damaged natural environment and climate and leave that to our kids as a legacy.
A point related to the fires, that may affect some of your readers, is that of insurance embargoes on taking out policies in entire regions that have been assessed by insurers as at risk. Obviously we all know that disasters put pressure on house insurance premiums. But what not everyone may have thought about are embargoes on obtaining a policy at all.
It’s obvious that if someone owns a place for a while without insuring it and then tries to insure it as the closest bush-fire is racing towards their town, an insurer is likely to say “no thanks” to offering a policy, and failure to insure is rampant in Australia. For example, a recently published statistic in an article about under insurance suggests that 26% of residential properties in Victoria are wholly uninsured: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2020-01-07/crisis-of-underinsurance-threatens-to-scar-rural-australia/11844992?fbclid=IwAR0cPR5EP1V9zhMaqUOI8hQPl8C0fkmqemYFO_gTO4lv5MNyq9xQLupsJY4
However, policy embargoes on whole regions also affect people who contract for or settle on a property and then immediately do the sensible thing and call their insurer to get cover. By example, I bought an investment house in early November, before the fires were a major concern in most places. When I came to settlement day and called my insurer, I was told an embargo was in place on new policies in our town, which is in regional NSW.
I had to argue the point about being an existing client with other properties insured with the company, plus the fact that it was a new purchase not a pre-existing property that I was now trying to cover my tail over, before they relented and issued a policy. This experience sent me to looking up the concept of whole region embargoes, which I’d not known of before, and I think there will be many others who also buy homes or investment houses, who come up against this risk issue and have been caught unawares. Obviously forewarned is forearmed, so it would be great if embargoes could be more widely publicised/explained to the public.
Excellent point Michele. There is presently a block on insuring anything at Bindi. It’s a wake up call to everyone that reacting is never as good as preparing. Thankfully my property at Bindi has insurance, but if it burns, that will be small comfort against the aggravation of making and managing a claim. I hope 2020 is a happy and healthy year for you.
Great article Steve ! I agree 100%. Lets all try to become more sustainable. We are turning our 28 acre hobby farm into a more sustainable property. Planting trees, and be part of the land for wildlife program. And moving towards using renewable energy. (Changed the old poĺuting 2 stroke chainsaw to electric, charged by our solar panel system). Even small actions help. Lets all do our bit!
Well done Mitch. A little, done by a lot, will create momentum and change for good. Happy 2020.
Yes, yes & YES! “A little done by a lot, will create momentum and change for good”. Please don’t underestimate the power of this statement. I believe that this is the simple ‘king Solomon’ solution to forging a path forward through the cacophony of ideologies, manipulators, pressure groups and factions. Thanks heaps for leading the way with your carbon sink Steve. A third of the earth’s land mass is desert and we now have the technology to re-forest deserts. Now is the best time to do that, while we have CO2 levels above 400ppm.
Hi Rob. Thanks for your contribution and encouragement. Happy New Year to you and your family.
Thank you ! Steve happy 2020
As always, Steve, I take my hat off to you for your straight talking. Evocative too, and I think we all need some of that. I’ve been wrestling with this whole climate change thing for some time. As you know, I am one of the older generation who (largely) disbelieves in the rhetoric of many today. But here’s the thing – I don’t disbelieve that we are having an impact. I am sure we are. Exactly how much, that I’m not so sure of. But I do struggle to understand why we are rallying to fix things we DON’T understand instead of concentrating on what we do !!
I hear cries of “It is better to do something than to do nothing about climate change” – and my best response is “Really? Like what?” Can’t we be a bit more specific about WHAT to do before we just race out to do it? Volcanoes and bush fires both have a HUGE impact on our environment – one of these we may have a chance of impacting – the other, no hope at all. What of volcanoes that erupt under water? Do these have an impact on CO2? And if they do, what can we do about them?
I also read that CO2 is high. Is that us (people) doing it? Yes, it certainly could be. But then, do we really KNOW that this is what causes rising temperatures currently? There have been several occasions through the last hundred years when CO2 climbed and yet temperatures didn’t, and they even dropped as CO2 climbed. So really, doesn’t that seem like a rather tenuous link? And CO2 has been way higher (five times higher) in earlier days – so could it be this is all just part of a larger cycle that we are unaware of as yet?
If it proves to be true that we are causing the earth’s temperature to rise, does that mean we MUST turn to infant technologies (solar, wind power) that are as expensive as hell, with little chance of replacing our electricity needs in the near future (leaving old people to overheat in summer and be too cold in winter because they can’t afford the power prices). Solar power is NOT doing what was projected it would/could do – have you noticed? Maybe we should spend more on making it far more robust as a power source, before “shipping it out everywhere” to jack up power prices even further”?
I agree that we need to discuss things respectfully – and I’m ready for that. I would love to have the opportunity to discuss things with those who label me as a denier. I find though that for many, “the science is settled” and they turn away from any chance of discussion. While ever this continues, I don’t hold out much hope of us doing the right things. What I do know is that the climate ismade up of WAY MORE than just “increasing CO2”. As Steve mentioned, the Sun plays a big part, as do weather patterns, sea currents, etc. It is all a HUGE jigsaw puzzle.
Steve, I also saw a lot of sense in your “generational” comments. Really good food for thought there.
At times I think we need a “King Solomon” to handle some of these modern-day questions. Where can we find one?
PS There is “so much more” I would want to share, or discuss. If you wish to debate me, or share your thoughts elsewhere, do come see me at :-
See, this is what I talk about in respect to “wisdom” that comes from age and experience. Youngins rush in. Those longer in the tooth say “hang on, let’s be a little patient and a lot more effective.”
All your questions are good ones Les. And they deserve considered responses prompting dialogue so everyone feels heard. Sadly, in the absence of moderate discussion, we have extremes shouting at each other, generating a lot of noise, but not much listening.
Happy 2020 to you my friend.
Susan Elizabeth Douglas
You should run for prime minister Steve :)
LOL. Free coffee for all! :-) Happy New Year Susan.
Peter (1st Kiwi Adventure)
Great read Steve. Given my position and involvement in relation to the current fires I cannot provide comments but wish you, your family and associates all the best for 2020. Let’s catch up soon :)
Oh happy memories from days long past. Good to hear from you Pete. Happy New Year.
Great point of view.
I wonder if the Government needs to console with the Aboriginal community to help out with back burn control. I saw a documentary on it and it was brilliant, fires were only about 30 cm high.
Also need an aerial drop of tree seedlings to help regeneration.
I saw huge planes scoop up sea water in Greece and put out Eucalyptus tree fires there.
I think a forum like this where people can put short comment on ideas that can help. And hopefully someone with clout can action some of it.
Take care All
I saw this too Anita. I think it should be on the table for discussion. I hope all your dreams come true in 2020.
Your comments are to logical for some to understand, we just have to keep the pressure up, remedial work is expensive, doing nothing is even more so.
Well said, and very true Lindsay. Surely the state and federal governments look nothing but silly in their penny pinching attempts at saving compared to the massive cost of these bush fires. Yes, hindsight is 20:20, but we were forewarned this would be a dangerous fire season. The extra risk should have been covered, not left exposed.
I am not trying to be argumentative or start a flame war (both sides of this debate are as bad as each other at doing this) as I am very much in agreeance that we need to better manage our effect on nature, I just want an open discussion and fair discussion about it but felt I needed to comment on a few items.
While vegetation management definitely isn’t the singular reason for the fires it is definitely a major reason for the extent the fires have got where they are. You can’t tell me that with deep dry undergrowth that hasn’t been managed in years isn’t going to produce a much more dangerous fire than areas with that have been properly managed? During the Canberra fires several years ago very few of the properties who had managed there land properly, even though they were fined for it were destroyed compared to many of their neighbors. We keep our property fairly well managed and the recent fire that effected us never took hold on our property but instead burnt around on the heavily overgrown dry vegetation of the neighboring properties and forestry.
I disagree with you that people have a hard time agreeing that we aren’t effect the nature of the planet, most people would agree with you on this. We are clearly having an effect on pollution, particularly in major cities, too much tree clearing etc. But agreeing that we are affecting the environment and believing in climate change are too very different things and are not mutually inclusive as you imply they are. Don’t get me wrong I am all for better and sustainable management of our land and environment and finding better ways of doing things that are less polluting and have a less effect on nature but this isn’t a correct argument nor does it prove “climate change”.
Also I am not sure the previous changes in climates have been over “eons” as you so dramatically put it. A brief reading of Australian history would tell you that we have seen swings from extreme drought to extreme floods over periods of years and definitely under decades?? My Grandfather who kept meticulous weather records for management of his farm recorded dramatic swings in weather conditions over the 70 yrs that he ran it. He saw 50 deg heat, bitter long droughts, extreme floods, even snow (when people were worried about “Global Cooling”) and he lived in south western Queensland, and all this happened in 70 yrs, of which I would hardly call “eons”.
While I am definately not denying with are having an effect one on environment I am skeptical on weather we are affecting our temperature. With our long term trend so weather cycles going up down and all over the place and there being several examples of CO2 rising but temperatures falling (as stated by a previous person) I don’t see the correlation. Even when you look at it in a more recent narrow view we have to remember that correlation is not causation either!
Whatever you believe about it we have to be careful that what we “do about it” doesn’t make the situation worse, for instance how we are stopping vegetation management for supposedly damaging the environment and yet this is much better than the amount of carbon dioxide produced from large megger fires. Or how many people have looked into how solar panels are constructed and the amount of toxic waste that is produced, and this is only to supply a small demand for solar. If we are going to replace world wide energy use with solar this is going to be amplified in orders of magnitude larger.
I do congratulate you on actually trying to do something about it and following through on your beliefs about it and trying to make a difference. This is very commendable and it is a pity more people would do this instead just abusing “deniers” on social media. I commonly hear the argument that there is nothing I can do and how we need some new Grand Global Order to do something about it coming from the same people who love to blame the rest of the world for climate change and yet the buy and run a V8 Ute/Sedan as their daily driver or who regularly throw out waste that could be reused for other things or recycled.
Anyway just my thoughts in the nature of having an open discussion about the topic. I personally believe we really need to address our pollution and other direct effects like this that we are have on the environment, but I don’t think they are going to be solved governments or grand world wide master plans. I believe they will be solved at the individual level by innovating new solutions, changing the way we doing things and that everyone can do something even if just a little bit.
All the best Steve keep up the great work you are doing
Thanks for your contribution, and welcome to the conversation.
Your comments add to the robust discussion and raise depth to several important issues. One of them, how to best manage the fuel load, is contentious in that there are some strong views. It is true that a fire can’t burn without fuel, yet it is also true that a fire will burn hotter and faster in (genuine native forest) areas that have been thinned out. A balance is needed and I can’t but think that our nations first citizens would have some valuable information to share.
Thankfully it is raining now in Melbourne. I hope this rain makes it to the areas that need it most.
I wish you all the best for 2020 and beyond.
Well said Michael
Looks like Bindi is about to be the beneficary of that rain you had in Melbourne – it is starting up in Omeo right now (about 7:50pm your time), and it seems to have a nice wide band of rain to cover a huge area. I hope it proves to be enough to stop the current fires where they sit.
Hi Benny. It looks like we have dodged a burn out, and that there was a little rain. This week isn’t looking too threatening, but Feb in Victoria tends to be when things get tricky for bush fires. Maybe this year the season came early… we can only hope!
A great article Steve. I could not support you more in what you are doing and the legacy you are seeking to leave. The article was extremely well written, well done. One day we will look out over the valley in Bindi and all we will be able to see is trees.
Cheers Ash. Thanks for the comment. I hope the smoke is clearing in Canberra.
Its great to see a balanced view of what is going on. In my mind I have been thinking most of the hype has been around FIXING which does NOT address the PROBLEM. Now what the problem is … is up for debate. But lets address the problem and not band-aid solutions. I think the media has a lot to answer for as hyping up the solutions takes the focus away from what needs to be discussed. Keep up the great work.
Yeah, short term fixes may be popular, but they’re usually ineffective and more expensive than spending more upfront for a better outcome. I keep shaking my head at governments that ‘save’ money by building roads, that only a few years later need to be widened at considerable extra cost compared to future building it to begin with!
Here’s to a better and brighter 2020 Newman.
I agree with you, Steve. I am old enough to be a senior citizen, am well educated and been around for decades listening to warnings about us needing to do more to help the environment under the hugely increasing human population – warnings that went unheeded once heavy industry decided they didn’t want to change their ways. Arguments undermining scientists then started pouring forth – prior to that, and on all other issues, scientists were held in high regard.
I have tried having a reasoned discussion with an elderly neighbour (a mere ten years older than me), but felt his views were so bizarrely unscientific, it was pointless to continue, so told him we need to not discuss this topic. Subsequent to that, he shouts after me: “there is an ice coming, in our lifetime, and all this global warming will help…and there are websites with the science to prove it”!
What can you do? (Apart from not walking past his front door anymore)! He gets a vote, just like me. I really think he has just fallen with following the right winged press and can’t let go of wanting everyone else to submit and agree to what he thinks. It’s certainly not the reasoned discussion I used to be prepared to have with people on this issue.
This is a sad story Eli, but one that is quite common (finding being holding form to a belief, to the point of being unable to see other possibilities because it would undermine the validity of their position).
I hope that 2020 is a great year for you, and your neighbour.
Thanks for your common sense Steve. We can’ t afford to do nothing.
Happy 2020 Dale.
Happy 2020 to you and your family too Steve.
Well said Steve and as a Dean of mathematics said recently ‘mathematically we must accept climate change because to deny climate change we are lost, but to accept climate change we loose nothing but gain a beautiful clean planet’.
There are numerous climate scientists, physicists and biologists who agree with man made climate change. There are also climate change denier arguments but regardless of these arguments they do nothing to slow the momentum of increasing pollution of air, rivers, ocean and the destruction of vegetation, whereas climate change acceptors slow and hopefully in time holt pollution.
We have not only an emerging environment crisis but also a financial crisis at our doorstep. To deny opportunities of income and employment from renewable markets is to leave the door open for our competing neighbours, losing advantage we could have had and the opportunity to replace income and employment which will occur as the demand for our dirty export products decline, which it will. All being reinforced by right wing political and news deniers, Labour’s solution to fix our financial problem by increased debt and taxes in my opinion won’t work, only making the problem worse longterm.
I don’t like reading in the press and seeing graphs and figures proving Australians are dumb and getting dumber, I want to read how innovative, progressive and how we are leading, as was the case in the past.
The ACT, although in a slightly different situation to other States is about to become 100% sustainable, it’s not rocket science it just needs a desire and a little effort.
Steel production can be produce with renewables as Sanjeev Gupta is about to prove as he phases renewables into his South Australian steel production, it can be done.
Just a few thoughts from an old bloke.
And by the way, I enjoy driving my electric car, everyone should visit their dealer for a test drive they are so much better than a gas guzzler in every way, and yes Michaelia Cash I also like my ute and hopefully one day, it too will be electric.
It’s nice to hear from you Ross. Thanks for your contribution. All the best for 2020.
Bea van Mullekom
The frustrating thing is that one person can do so little. But it is encouraging to see in the responses that people are thinking about it and trying to do their bit. I ride my bike or take public transport, buy less red meat , donate to Greening Australia, and recycle what I can. But … I am hoping!! that Australia as a country will take a stand, be courageous, take massive action to plant back those billion trees (there is space!), and take steps towards zero use of fossil fuels!
Hi Bea. When you’re feeling overwhelmed, and you feel like you can’t do everything, then figure out what you can do (your something), and then make it your everything. That will be more than enough.
For instance, I can’t stop sex slavery in SE Asia, but I can help support Ping Pong A Thon, and if I commit all my effort to doing what I can, then that’s the best I can do, and it will make a difference to those who can be directly helped by it.
So you know the story of the starfish washed up on the beach?
Once upon a time, there was an old man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach every morning before he began his work. Early one morning, he was walking along the shore after a big storm had passed and found the vast beach littered with starfish as far as the eye could see, stretching in both directions.
Off in the distance, the old man noticed a small boy approaching. As the boy walked, he paused every so often and as he grew closer, the man could see that he was occasionally bending down to pick up an object and throw it into the sea. The boy came closer still and the man called out, “Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?”
The young boy paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean. The tide has washed them up onto the beach and they can’t return to the sea by themselves,” the youth replied. “When the sun gets high, they will die, unless I throw them back into the water.”
The old man replied, “But there must be tens of thousands of starfish on this beach. I’m afraid you won’t really be able to make much of a difference.”
The boy bent down, picked up yet another starfish and threw it as far as he could into the ocean. Then he turned, smiled and said, “It made a difference to that one!”
Adapted from The Star Thrower, by Loren Eiseley (1907 – 1977)
The idea of a large carbon sink forest would be great. Because of climate change, forest fire and different catastrophes are abundant Santa barbara concrete contractors
Well written, Steve. The government should take initiative and plan for a more long-term solution. Climate change is even more bothering this year.