The recent news that the UK government is to respond to public demand and halt fracking in England combined with other events demonstrates some important things:
- We, The People, can if we put our mind to it, influence our government into sane responses to environmental problems.
- Problems presented by the environment CAN and HAVE BEEN resolved WITHOUT us having to return to the Stone Age or endure major changes to our way of life or standard of living.
- Our societies can move forward and evolve into ever-higher conditions as they already have been doing for quite some time.
Some of the other events that should give us encouragement are:
The news that this year that the UK for the first time now runs on electricity from MORE THAN 50% renewable energy. We have but to bolster and encourage this trend to evolve rapidly towards 100%.
Remember CFC gases and the hole in the planet’s protective ozone layer? This was a severe environmental problem and survival threat. Grassroots demand for a solution prompted bans on CFCs and the development of safer alternative gases for use in refrigerators and so forth. The fesult was that the ozone layer was saved, started to repair itself and is on track (see this article) to have fully repaired itself by 2060.
Remember smog? I am old enough to remember smog, which we haven’t seen now for decades. The year I was born (1952) there was the famous London Smog. This was a severe pollution event and major catastrophe caused by the burning of coal in power stations and millions of homes (before gas and oil fired central heating). It killed over 1o,000 people and made very many more extremely ill. It led to the Clean Air Act 1956 , greater environmental awareness and various other successful measures to protect the air. I remember in later years, when I was still a kid, we used to get the occasional, milder smog, but over time these petered out. In the sixty or so years since, we have not had a similar catastrophe.
Naturally, it is far more optimum to predict and then prevent such disasters BEFORE they happen – and we are indeed getting better at that – but the moral of these stories is that we CAN find solutions for problems relating to our own survival.
We have in fact been doing so for centuries as our civilisation moves forward learns and evolves.
Take heart and carry on!
About the Author
Steve Cook is a poet, novelist, author and satirist. His websites are