The National Catholic Review

Saturday, June 5 is World Environment Day, a day first celebrated in 1973, and intended by the UN to stimulate awareness of the environment and enhance political attention and public action.

            The pictures of flamingoes and geese with tarred feathers, the satellite photos showing the extent of the pollution spreading through the Gulf of Mexico, the BP camera one mile down showing the oil continuing to vomit forth, the fishing boats docked and fishermen out of jobs--these images make this World Environment Day troubling, eerie, foreboding and challenging to say the least. What do we have to celebrate? 

            How far we are from the viewpoint and words of Pope Benedict: “The environment must be seen as God’s gift to all people, and the use we make of it entails a shared responsibility for all humanity, especially the poor and future generations.”

Peter Schineller, S.J.

 

Comments

Stanley Kopacz | 6/6/2010 - 12:03pm
The idea of poking holes into oil deposits below our oceans is intrinsically stupid and only justified by short term goals and greed.  It is easier to work on the moon than at the high pressures involved.  They obviously didn't have the technology in place to deal with this eventuality.  It's all about wishful thinking.  It was wishful thinking that resulted in the Challenger Space Shuttle disaster.  They had problems on that oil rig, but nobody wanted to do the things necessary because it would munch into BP's profit margin.  Big corporations are essentially sociopathic entities and, if tolerated for whatever good they can engender, they must be closely monitored by people with better priorities.
THere's a time for anger.  That time is now.  But the problem is not just BP.  We let them get away with these shenanigans because we want the oil.  I drive a Honda CIvic hybrid and I still feel guilty.  I only ameliorate my guilt because there are alternate technologies that could've been in place but we've been sitting on our thumbs for thirty years.  It's wishful thinking that the oil would flow forever.  The thing is, the dusk of cheap energy is at hand.  We need to use the cheap energy to facilitate the construction of new infrastructure based on the new technologies, before the cheap energy runs out.  But we can keep on with the wishful thinking until we're really done for.
Claire Mathieu | 6/5/2010 - 3:01am
Seeing the title, at this time of year, I was sure you were going to talk about Corpus Christi!