Archive for April 2, 2012
Drought fears for Midlands and south-west England
“Farmers in East Anglia are unlikely to be allowed to draw water from the ground or rivers to irrigate crops. Some are reporting crop reductions of between 20-50%, in vegetables like onions and carrots.
Extra capacity is being found in other areas of the country.
Environment Agency water resources head Trevor Bishop told BBC Radio 4′s Today programme the situation was becoming more serious.
‘If we see a continuation of dry weather, which is now very likely, these conditions will probably extend further westward over the next couple of months.’”
I suggest we reconsider taking on the responsibility of “feeding the world.” I repeat, we do not have the problem of lack of food or lack of growing areas where food is needed. The problem is largely twofold.  Too many people live where they have “eaten out their environment”  Exploitation by the wealthy who own large tracts of land and grow food for export to enable the well to do to gobble out of season fruit and vegetables. Surely if we plough up marginal land here to feed them there, then they will continue to make more and more children until we all be in the same boat.
A few questions. Where will the water come to increase global food? Where will the water come from to water the millions of trees needed to reduce CO2 to stabilize the climate so droughts can be reduced? Now that food has become a global commodity in a global market, can we expect the food sector to favour reducing demand by backing efforts to restrain population growth? Of course not. Except for China, when have you read about a government encouraging the limitation of population growth? I suggest that most governments are now driven by the business attitudes that favour more people. They would wouldn’t they?
Regulators are interesting devices. Voltage regulators, for instance keep a constant voltage level to a voltage output. Regulators are vital to the function of a diesel engine driving a generator because when the regulation fails, the engine “runs away” and explodes.
Perhaps a corporate structure lacks a “regulator.” Is there a corporate concept of “enough profit?” Do corporate executives ever make “enough”?
Can you imagine this statement being made by a corporate executive to the board? “Well, we need to decrease our output and consider that we have made enough profit this year. Our procurement policy is overdriving supply to the detriment of both the organisations and dependent environment.” Sound familiar? Of course not.
I’m just rereading a letter sent to the government of Slovenia from James Hansen, one of my heroes. Read it here if you will.
“The most basic matter is not one of economics, however. It is a matter of morality – a matter of intergenerational justice. As with the earlier great moral issue of slavery, an injustice done by one race of humans to another, so the injustice of one generation to all those to come must stir the public’s conscience to the point of action.”
Intergenerational justice. I often consider starting my memoirs so that my grandchildren might know who I was and what I thought. Why? Well, I know very little about my Grandfather McCain and I often wonder now what he thought about things. Who was he really?
However, will my grandchildren ask, “Was our welfare important enough to you that you cared enough to speak out during your life against the wanton destruction of our way of life?
You could see clearly what was happening and how things would turn out when we were too young to either realise it or speak out. Did you lift a finger on our behalf?”