Harnessing the ocean to build our green future – What’s the use of that?

Essay by Eric Worrall

Time magazine paints a great green vision of massive exploitation of pristine, unspoiled seas to build our renewable-powered future.

The ocean is the first and last victim of climate change


June 23, 2022 7:00 AM EDT

Rainforest may be called the lung of the planet, but when standing in front of the sea, with the waves crashing against the shore and the tides constantly, we feel the earth is breathing. Scientists say that the ocean is the source of all life on earth. According to philosophers, it also embodies life’s greatest terror: the unknown and uncontrollable.

This duality has become increasingly evident in the climate discourse of recent years, as ice melts, seas rise and coastlines everywhere face violent storms unprecedented in memory. living. But even as the ocean has become the subject of a hand wringing out what we have created, it has also become a cornerstone of hope that we can limit the damage if we act now. .

We can start at the bottom. The base of the Pacific Ocean is dotted with rare metals that we need to make the batteries we need to provide power zero carbon tourism. Moving on, by harnessing the power of the tides, we can plug another renewable energy source into our struggling grid; Offshore wind farms are also poised to expand exponentially as an essential source of electricity. And while we may see road vehicles at the heart of our electric mobility efforts, the decarbonization of shipping could be what really moves the global economy into the future. green.

Meanwhile, the oceans are the central bank of the earth’s carbon share. Researchers are working to figure out how to properly capture CO2 from fossil fuel-burning plants and inject the gas into rocks on the ocean floor. And efforts are underway to protect and rebuild ocean ecosystems such as mangroves, salt marshes and seagrasses, not only sequestering more CO2 than terrestrial ecosystems, but It also acts as a natural breakwater to protect coastal populations.

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I used to tease my green friends about how we need more plants, but I really like nature.

One of my happiest memories is walking through my grandfather’s woods, spending hours alone among the trees. My grandfather bought land for a song in the 1930s, low value land that is considered unsuitable for agriculture as it is full of rocks, trees, landscapes and high hills.

From the top of my grandfather’s hill you could see a city, many miles to the south. Sometimes while walking I come across absolute wonders, such as the ruins of an ancient goldmine-era tavern that no historian remembers, or the vast field of Drosera the plants I discovered were growing peacefully in their native habitat, away from the forest trails, hidden under the trees. Those delicate, beautiful plants may be worth thousands of dollars to collectors, but the forest in which they grow is a place of beauty, a place of joy wherever I go. visit. I leave them undisturbed.

For all I know the beautiful trees are still there, still intact. Maybe one day others will discover the hidden beauty of walking through the forest. I hope whoever finds them in the future chooses to leave them as they did when they found them.

I’m not anti-industry. I am a realist, I like the comforts of modern civilization. But in this pseudo-climate emergency, we’ve seen reasonable protections for the environment pushed aside, like the gentle treatment the wind farm operators seem to receive when they kill so many protected eagles. Is climate-driven ocean mining any different?

In my opinion, the rush to exploit the ocean, to support something as worthless as the climate crusade, the green vision presented by Time, represents indiscriminate destruction, unnecessary destruction. and reckless, like all the poor dead eagles being slaughtered by wind turbines.

What has turned people who used to chain themselves to trees, to block new roads or dams, into frenzied miners who seem to want all the valleys concreted, converted to hydroelectricity? being pumped, raptors killing wind turbines everywhere, solar panels covering all the valleys, and now seem to want to turn vast oceans and mangrove swamps into one industrial wasteland?

How can these people convince themselves that they are still behaving like people who care about the environment by all means? How to cover the world with giant machines and poison the oceans with mine waste and industrial waste, wiping out care in the name of a fake climate emergency, could be human The path to a better tomorrow?

For shame, Time.

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