Torstai 16.7.2020 klo 19:14 - Mikko Nikinmaa
When I stayed a year in California, one of its greatest sides was the diverse environment. Seeing elephant seals, Yosemite, Sierra Nevada, redwood was great. The worst smogs were long past. Thinking back to the time 40 years ago it seems that in the presidential election this November one makes a choice between degradation and conservation of the environment (among many other things).
Trump has always put money first, regardless of what is destroyed while making money. This has been very obvious with the Covid-19 pandemic: the economy of the states was opened before the peak of infections was past. One sees the result now, whereas Europe is starting to recover also economically, USA is going back deeper into recession with increasing number of Covid-19 cases. The short-sighted thinking of economic growth would probably also hurt American economy, if Trump were able to carry out his environmental agenda – loosening restrictions, allowing pollution, increasing coal use, giving benefits to oil industry etc. Going in the past with the climate change looming is not an option, the future technologies are the ones offering profits, not the ones resorting to old technologies.
Luckily the democratic candidate John Biden is taking a completely opposite stand. He recently gave out a plan of putting 2 trillion dollars to environmental actions, if getting elected. (Being able to do this requires that also the senate will have democrats in majority). He also realizes that the environmentally sustainable technologies are the ones that can be profitable in future.
The American presidential race is also important for the rest of the world, since USA is the most important energy and natural resource consumer. What is the direction at the top in USA will affect the possibilities for any global environmental agreements.
Maanantai 22.4.2019 klo 12:54 - Mikko Nikinmaa
It is again Earth Day, and compared to last year the state of the earth has not improved. The predictions are gloomier and gloomier. However, there is much to be pleased about, despite the gloomy predictions. The state of environment, especially climate change and plastic pollution have become front page news. Although many people are of the opinion that one should not scare people by giving them too negative news, it appears that nothing is accomplished unless a catastroph is imminent.
As a flagship for Earth day one could take Our Planet, now available in Netflix. David Attenborough (born 1926) is still avtive, and his documentary, showing different aspects of the earth clearly indicates that the beauty and diversity of world is far too great to be given up. This is so especially, as we have the means to combat climate change and other environmental problems. With regards to plastic pollution, it doesn't even require significant funds, just a change of attitude all over the world. What is worrying that plastic collected in Industrialized Western Countries has recently been found disposed in the environment in Malaysia. It is not the way that collected plastic should be found. A likely reason for such finding is that China has stopped importing plastic waste. However, the stop of import should not result in throwing the problem elsewere, it should result in treating the material where it is used. In the case of climate change, we need to be willing to set aside funds. However, most people are certainly willing to give up some of the money we have taken as loan from future generations. The problem is people, whose attitudes are from the past, when there were only 2 billion people in the world, when Europeans dreamed of big Amerrican cars and petrol was cheap and coal mines an important work place. Such people should see that thing are different now, and stop resisting actions that are needed to keep world beautiful as in Our World.