“For two hundred years, we, in the west, have wagered the world that economic growth is the highest form of progress, burning more and more fossil fuels.” (David Suzuki)
I am not the biggest fan of Suzuki but I watched this documentary last night and got to wondering about the effects of climate change and where this all came from – and what is a Christian stand on this?
Well we are well aware this all grew out of Industrialization and the rise of oil as a basic economic underpinning. Although this 200 year history has spawned some of the greatest technological advances and conveniences – it has also caused major problems with our natural world. Suzuki points out problems in the “Canadian Arctic, Montana, Northern Kenya, China and India” – and how the erosion of soil, ecological disasters, and the melting of ice caps all effect various communities in major ways (ex: death, starvation, loss of soil to grow things, and moving of communities to adjust).
I watched in horror more or less at communities losing everything in sub-sahara Africa or Chinese villages having to move every few years due to soil erosion. It seemed like all the answers to the problems are being thought up but no one is taking them serious. Why?
Greed. A system that is 200 years old and building more infrastructure aorund the earth is not about to go ‘quietly into that good night’. There is still a lot of money to be made and many markets are yet to be tapped completely (ex: China). I see a struggle between global markets and the strain on the global environment arising and someone has to concede.
But as a Christian person this bothers me. The West is enjoying the benefits of industrialization – other countries are suffering for the amount of stuff we do to the environment to keep our convenient lifestyles. It makes me feel a little guilty for being born into this and then enjoying it. We have inherited a system that both benefits us yet destroys our lifesource – the earth. It almost seems the almighty Dollar is worth more than the Almighy’s objectives for us – to care for this earth. I know that we are called not to ‘greed’ but to ‘care for the poor’ – yet in the West I see the opposite happening. Will this switch before it’s too late?
“And don’t blame me I was given this world I didn’t make it” (2 Pac – Keep Your Head Up)