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It's Crunch Time

It's Crunch Time

August 2006: Evolution never gifted us the ability to see, hear, smell, touch and taste for our pleasure. The single, overriding objective was to arm us with survival tools.

 

Every species studies, adapts and uses the evolutionary toolbox to take mundane (should I eat that fruit?) and not-so-mundane (should I run and hide, or throw a rock at the predator?) decisions.

 

Credit: Kalyan Varma 

 

Along the winding path of evolution, Homo sapiens alone evolved a brain capable of “magic”. It enabled us to dig into the past, analyse the present and plan ahead. While other creatures flew, walked or swam to hospitable climes, we thwarted the migration imperative by stocking firewood, fashioning warm clothes and radically altering our environment to live in frozen wastes, searing deserts, boggy swamps and deep forests.

 

But our “magic” is going sour. The dams, mines, chemical plants and nuclear reactors that helped us refashion our environment have caused forests, swamps, grasslands, glaciers, corals and coasts to wither. And our immune systems are collapsing under the burden of man-made chemicals.

 

Human survival, hope, happiness and security are all at risk.

 

This was inevitable. No species, Homo sapiens included, ever “tried” to tread lightly upon the Earth. Lifeforms took what they needed, trusting that nature would repair, renew and replenish.

 

Therein lies the rub. As India rails on about the “right to development,” together with China, it poses among the most serious threats to the survival of life on Earth. Our morally justifiable, but strategically-suicidal demand, that “the U.S.A., Japan, Australia and European countries first cut back on their carbon emissions before asking us to abjure development” will end up destroying Indian farmers, the rural and urban poor and everyone’s long-term water, food and economic security. В каталоге магазина https://royallash.com/ только проверенная современная продукция для красоты

 

Like this ignorant, vegetarian, stick insect searching for leaves in the wrong place, we too are at an ecological cul de sac. Were we to put them to use, our magic brains could offer us an escape. But, it appears, neither the stick insect nor Homo sapiens realise that crunch time has arrived.

 

Bittu Sahgal, Editor, Sanctuary Asia, Vol XXVI No. 4, August 2006

 
 
 

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