RIP Lonesome George

Lonesome George passed away today. If you don’t know who George was, he was about a century old and the last Giant Tortoise from the island of Pinta in the Galapagos. His comrades became extinct decades ago due to human hunting and the importation of wild goats which destroyed the ecosystem that the tortoises depended on.

George’s death coincided with the failure of Rio20+ the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development to achieve much tangible progress towards its stated goal.

What is your attitude to the environmental debate?What if anything is your church saying or doing? What, if any, are theological resources that you have found helpful?

On the one hand are the apocalyptic warnings of coming catastrophe – the ruthless exploitation of the planet, the despoilation of the oceans and the collapse of global fish stocks, the melting of the Arctic and the impact of global warming. Humanity as ‘homo rapens’  – raper of the earth. Overly pessimistic gloom? Humanity hating hyperbole? Or prophetic critique of human pride, destructiveness and stupidity?

On the other hand are the critics of the green movement and those who warn of global warming. People who either deny the problem or who put their hope in innovation and technology to counter its effects. Naive idealism? Self-interested complacency of the rich? Or realistic trust in human ingenuity?

Comments, as ever, welcome.

 

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4 thoughts on “RIP Lonesome George

  1. We are stewards of the earth so should take care of it. I will have to get back to you on the Encyclical I read that addressed this. But I just wanted to add quickly, from what I have noticed, some of the green movement people are just interested in making profit with their types of technology rather than actually working towards the same goal of helping the environment. This happened recently in a law they were trying to pass here to reduce emissions, but it was knocked down by the “green” folk oddly enough–it didn’t help their business to help the law pass. It’s awful when greed gets in the way. Moderation, balance, sigh… Anyway, I have to tend to something else right at the moment but will give you the link to the theological perspective I read on the environment.

  2. Here are a couple of links…They weren’t the same ones that I had read before, but they say pretty much the same thing. They are rather long. Sorry about that.
    http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/encyclicals/documents/hf_ben-xvi_enc_20090629_caritas-in-veritate_en.html (this one is an encyclical)
    http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/cti_documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20040723_communion-stewardship_en.html (I didn’t finish this one, so I am not sure what it says towards the end).
    God bless, brother…

  3. Actually, I think that before we decide on which truth to believe, whether there is global warming or not – which we will hardly find out in our livetime – we could just think about whether we enjoy living in cities thick with smog and loud with the noise of traffic….if we really like getting stuck in our cars with millions of billions of other people in the rush hour or whether we like the taste of chlorine in our drinking water. Me and some friends deciced not to wait for new regulations of the government but to start something ourselves, so we stopped using our cars and now walk to work – in ths video you can see a friend of mine who started this project.
    http://www.siemens.com.br/sustainable-development-in-megacities/videos/im-not-traffic.html
    I personally don`t think, we should wait to see the critics proven wrong or right…it`s better to not risk it but go for a sustainable and green way – and there`s no harm in that…other than in finding out, ooops, actually the poles are gone, sorry, we were wrong.

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