Are we fighting a losing battle?

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Every part of our environment across the globe is at risk. We are facing the risk of global warming which will dictate our lives if we do not reduce Carbon Dioxide emissions by 50% in less than 12 years. Biodiversity loss is occurring at a much faster rate as species become extinct every day. Even species we did not know their importance to our planet are going extinct. Our oceans are filled with plastic waste dating to as far as 10 decades. Hunters and poachers think it’s okay to kill wild animals and get away with it. Corporates see people, animals and nature in its entirety as lifeless objects to be used as they compete with each other fervently.

 “The physical needs for food, water, shelter, clothing and basic comforts could be easily met for all humans on the planet, were it not for the imbalance of resources created by the insane and rapacious needs for more greed of the ego.” – Eckhart Tolle in A New Earth

Every country has seen humans concerned about the well-being of the people and the planet lose in one way or another. Consider the Amazon Forest. Acres of indigenous forest are being cut to make way for palm trees to offset the demand for palm oil. With it, the Orangutan, a primate species closely related to humans, is declining in number. Other species, especially bird species, within the Amazon no longer have a home. I believe the Amazon forest has faced so much turmoil as even mining activities are being done within the area. It’s not only the wildlife that is at risk but also indigenous people and local communities who do not entirely benefit from corporate ideals. The entire world will be at risk when we lose this important carbon sequestering forest.

Pesticides and herbicides have led to the near extinction of the many bee species. Without bees we face a hunger crisis. These chemicals are also slowly infiltrating into our underground water resulting in the risk of humans and animals, who get to consume the contaminated water, facing the risk of terminal illnesses.

As countries shut down coal power plants, Kenya decides this will be a great source of energy. Poaching continues to happen to many of Africa’s wild species. Habitat loss is prevalent as African countries and other developing countries across the world consider development as their major priority.

Are people and natural resources just numbers in a balance sheet?

When you are concerned about the welfare of planet earth and humanity you are always seen as an enemy of the state. Why do you want us to stop hunting our wildlife which benefits communities? Why do you want us to not develop? Why can’t you just let it be? Yet we can still be a world class nation especially when we consider the environment in which we are a part of. Kenya has lost a number of fights. The fight to prevent the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) Phase 2 project from passing through Nairobi National Park, the only park in a capital city, was to protect it in order to prevent any future mishaps from land grabbing to ‘Zooing’ the park from happening. The Coal Power Plant in Lamu seems like it was set in stone we just didn’t know about it. But we did. Activists tried there level best to educate the public on the ills of the coal power plant to our country, especially a county that is at the coastal region of Kenya and is home to coral reefs and numerous marine species. This will inevitably be a climate crisis.

Should we continue to fight on?

Yes. We should not give up. This is not an option. If we keep quiet, we will let all the evils that are happening to our environment to continue to happen. In part, by actively doing the little things such as tree growing, species monitoring, advocacy no matter how simple, we will win this fight to protect our natural resources and the human race.

Planet earth and humanity need you. They need you and that is why you are here.

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Vicki Wangui
Vicki Wangui
Vicki Wangui is a believer in all things beautiful. A believer in spreading information in regards to environmental awareness. A believer in sharing all that is good in Kenya's natural world. A believer in speaking truth with no boundaries. Do you have a story, photo, experience or message you need to share? Send your work to vicki@nyikasilika.org or vickiwangui26@gmail.com.

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