I am heartened by bloggers who continue the conversation about the oil spill and its aftermath. Each are sharing a unique perspective on how to look at and approach this tragedy and urgent call to action.
With any problem—personal or communal—it’s always useful to look at the issue from many different angles and to turn it around in your mind and heart several times. This allows a spectrum of creative solutions to emerge, and makes it possible to see more clearly the most efficacious and coherent strategies for all concerned.
These are some thoughtful articles that touched me in particular and invited me to consider the oil spill in new ways.
At this time ~ this space, timethief touches upon several different but interconnected points in her article “Rethinking oil use and dependency.” She emphasizes the importance of holding our lawmakers accountable, while also highlighting the need to kick our own addiction to fossil fuels. She shares links to media rich resources including a powerful video and telling images from NASA as well as individual photographers. timethief says:
“I believe it’s reasonable to expect our governments to ensure that industry complies with the laws of our land and to strengthen them. I believe we must insist regulatory oversight be put into place to protect the environment and must be stringently enforced. I believe maintaining oil as a energy resource and relying on oil based economies only serves to keep some people rich at the cost of the environment and the future ability of our beautiful planet to meet the needs of its inhabitants.”
Tess from The Bold Life offers yet another angle. In her article “Oil spill: taking personal responsibility,” Tess looks at the oil spill through the lens of love. She believes that love is the answer to all our problems and that letting go of blame, anger, fear, and judgement are critical. Tess says:
“The oil spill in the Golf Coast reveals we are at a critical moment in time, a crossroads. We can continue to pray, hope and wish our world would go back to being the way it was or we can decide to change and make cocreate a new world. In order to do so I believe we have to transcend the physical world.”
At The Canary Report, Susie Collins posted a video on how BP blowout cleanup workers are getting sick. In the video, an Exxon Valdez survivor warns of long term health effects, and an activist chemist currently on site in the Gulf reports on current illnesses in BP cleanup crew. In my opinion, the current wave of toxin-induced illness is a terrible way to confirm that chemical sensitivity is not psychogenic.
I agree with timethief: we need to kick our addiction to oil for the sake of future generations. I also agree with Tess: we are indeed at a critical crossroads and love is a powerful antidote. And, I appreciate Susie sounding the alarm about the potential for multiple chemical sensitivity among clean-up workers.
The oil spill presents us with a magnificent opportunity, but change can only happen if each and everyone of us decides to act. I am eminently optimistic and hopeful. I know we can turn this around and create a safer and environmentally friendly world. What can you do? One possibility: refuse or reuse plastic!
There are many ways to reduce your oil consumption. One of them is refusing to use disposable plastic because plastic is a petroleum based product and it has a number of additional harmful effects, like being toxic to human health and fatal for sea life.
The use of plastic in the Western world is ubiquitous. Consider these plastic facts from the Plastiki, a boat made of 12,000 plastic bottles that is sailing the Pacific to explore the extent and impact of plastic trash on our oceans and sea life.
- 13 billion plastic bags are issued worldwide each year.
- Americans trash 2.5 million plastic bottles every HOUR.
- It takes 450 years for one plastic bottle to degrade into the ground!
- 14 billion pounds of trash, much of it plastic, are dumped into the oceans every year.
- North America and Western Europe account for 80% of plastic use.
- Plastic bags and other plastic trash thrown into the ocean kill as many as 1 million sea creatures each year.
Astonishing, isn’t it? Radically reducing the use of plastic bags and refusing to buy food and drinks in plastic containers are two giant steps you can take for a better and brighter future. Bye, bye Evian. Just think of all the money you will save too!
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