When Notre Dame caught on fire and was in danger of burning down, the world reacted in sadness, billionaires swooped in to save the day, and repair became imminent. Yet even though the Amazon rainforest is now burning at a rapid rate and is something that most definitely affects our global ecosystem, hardly anyone seems to care, especially those who have ample money and resources to do something about it.
Frankly, I’m amazed at how very little people seem to care these days about preserving and protecting nature. I’m sure many have no idea that 10 to 20 percent of our world’s oxygen supply potentially comes from the Amazon rainforest. Can you imagine a world where our oxygen supply has depleted so much due to us not caring enough about nature and because of it, everyone now struggles with something as simple as breathing and oxygen has become a commodity that only the rich can afford? I’m sure the idea seems quite preposterous and sounds straight out of the pages of a future science-fiction book or movie script, but is it really that hard to believe that something like this can happen in light of what we are seeing happening all around our planet?
Glaciers are melting, various species of life are disappearing, the planet continues to experience the effects of global warming, solely because too many of us keep on polluting it and too few of us are doing enough to make a dam bit difference. Everywhere I walk, I see tons of trash strewn on the ground. People eat their fast food and then leave it in parking lots next to where their cars were parked. Empty drink containers commonly get tossed out of windows from moving cars. And let’s not forget all those cigarette butts that get left behind in the environment, which I’m sure for most of those who smoke, they have no idea that each one of those they toss is going to take anywhere from 18 months to 10 years to decompose.
But why care about all this when the consequences of our own actions in the environment isn’t affecting us right now? That’s at least what the ego’s answer is to all this isn’t it? Selfishness and self-centeredness are driving people to litter and burn our world away and no one seems to be blinking an eye. Yet, people seem to care more about a man-made structure like Notre Dame burning down, something that wouldn’t have impacted the everyday living of the rest of the planet, where millions and millions of dollars is still donated to fix it. The priorities people seem to have on this planet feels outright ridiculous these days.
While most of us probably don’t have the ability to make much of an impact on the burning Amazon rainforest other than donating a small amount to a legit organization dedicated to preserving it, there is plenty we can do much closer to home. Reduce, reuse, and recycle is the tagline that’s often used for guidance in this. And let’s not forget that we all have the ability to pick up trash when we see it. How often have you come across some trash that’s left on the ground somewhere in our environment that we ourselves could pick up and drop in a receptacle that’s mere steps away?
There will come a day when the impact of us not caring enough about our environment, as much as we do about the material worldliness of this world, is going catch up to us. If we allow too much of our rainforests to get destroyed, if we pollute too much of this planet, and annihilate too much of our natural ecosystems, there’s a good chance that those dystopian science-fiction novels and films will come to fruition, which I pray that if that day ever comes, I’m long gone.
In the meantime, I’m most certainly going to do my best to try to prevent that from happening and it starts by being more mindful of my own contributions to waste, by reusing what things I can, by recycling the things that are recyclable, by picking up my own trash and even contributing to picking up others, and making a small donation to a legitimate organization that can help the Amazon, which include The Amazon Conservation Association, the Amazon Conservation Team, Amazon Watch, Rainforest Foundation US, Rainforest Trust, or the Rainforest Action Network.
Peace, love, light, and joy,
Andrew Arthur Dawson