This whole disaster in the Gulf with the oil spill has got me thinking. First, that no matter what happens; even if BP does manage to cap the leak; even if the US government pulls their collective heads out of the sand (and their asses) and starts to FINALLY do something about it; even if we STOP off-shore drilling; even if the leak is “cleaned” up to some extent, NO MATTER WHAT, we ALL need to start really thinking about our reliance on oil.
Now, I’m going to lay some hard truths on you, the way I see it. Perhaps your fingers will itch to type some scathing reply in retort to my humble opinion. That’s fair. That’s your right. But be prepared for the simple fact that there is truth in what I am about to say:
STOP USING SO MUCH OIL.
Re-think your travel plans. Planning on another excursion to Hawaii/Mexico/Cuba this winter to escape the blahs? Maybe entertain the idea of going every second year. Your carbon footprint is already huge. Running errands on different days that you could combine into one day? Well, that can save you money AND the planet a little tiny bit. Choosing less plastic (pre-cycling) when shopping is that much less of an impact on our reserves. Conserve. Respect the fact that it’s a privilege and not a right to consume as much as we want in this world.
I could go on and on. It’s rhetoric we have all heard. I even get sick of it. Yada Yada Yada… environment blah blah blah. None of you are stupid. You all read and watch the news…. We all know what it’s like out there… Over 6 billion people in the world, and most of them live in utter despair while we complain that we could only “afford” a 10 day holiday this year instead of a 3 week excursion.
BUT. There is only so much oil in our planet. What will happen to us if and when this runs out? The idea of “peak” oil is not some tree-hugger’s attempt to make everyone go green. It’s a real fact, an event that will happen, sooner or later. How will you get your strawberries in January? Where will your new clothes come from, if transportation is so expensive that only the elite can afford to buy the latest fashions? Have you thought to yourself that you don’t actually need what you are buying? That truthfully, you want it, and that is the reason you’re buying something unwarranted?!
And guess what? This isn’t a lecture I’m directing at you. I’m telling myself as well. God knows, I am a slave to shopping, a slave to my own wishes and desires.
I’m guilty of it too. Tremendously so. Over use, over abundance, frivolity. Because of this, I am trying to wean myself off things slowly. I grow a garden, I recycle, I reduce. I drive less. I try to choose certain things in life that factor in the environment before any of my materialistic needs. I also over-indulge, make bad choices, ignore elements of the environment in my decisions of purchases.
It’s easy to join a facebook group condemning off-shore drilling. I’ve done it. The irony, though, is that we ALL use the product of this method every single day. Simply put, we’re all hypocrites.
I do hope that this horrible disaster can spur a change in this world. More solar energy, less oil usage. I don’t know, I’m not a scientist. I don’t have the easy answers. Sadly, I don’t think there are any.
All I know is, I sure would like this planet and all of its magnificent beauty to be around for my grandkids.