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Severe Weather Wreaks Havoc

Boats on the rocks
Boats on the rocks after the recent storms
Although Farmers, fishermen and sailors have been commenting on the unusual weather of late, after this past winter and spring, it is there for all to see. The frost last winter ravaged our gardens & hedgerows. No longer can we point out the palm trees to our visitors and smugly talk about our mild climate. The recent storms here were unprecedented in their ferocity and duration. Securely tied boats came adrift and found themselves high up on the rocks. The leaves on the plants that did survive the winter are shredded and burned.

But it is not just here. Gigantic tornadoes are flattening wide swaths in North America killing hundreds. And it is not just the weather. It seems that earthquakes are getting bigger and more frequent, with the resulting tsunamis destroying all before them.

The Gaia Treory

All these disasters do not mean we should be planning for the Apocalypse, as some religious sects might have us believe. But it does perhaps give one pause to reflect on the Gaia theory put forward by James Lovelock in the 1970s. The Gaia theory suggests that all organisms and their inorganic surroundings on Earth are closely integrated to form a single and self-regulating complex system, maintaining the conditions for life on the planet.

Boats on the rocks
The Earth seen from Apollo 17 (image from wiki commons)

The term Gaia comes from the Greek goddess personifying the Earth, the Greek version of Mother Nature, or the Earth Mother. At first scorned by all, this theory is becoming accepted by the world wide scientific community. In 2001, a thousand scientists at the European Geophysical Union meeting signed the Declaration of Amsterdam, starting with the statement "The Earth System behaves as a single, self-regulating system with physical, chemical, biological, and human components.” The scientific investigation of the Gaia hypothesis focuses on observing how the biosphere and the evolution of life forms contribute to the stability of global temperature, ocean salinity, oxygen in the atmosphere and other factors of habitability in a preferred homeostasis. This ecological hypothesis has also inspired analogies and various interpretations in social sciences, politics, and religion under a vague philosophy and movement.

Our Future

So, where does all this leave us? Global warming, or more correctly “climate change”, may certainly account for much of what we are experiencing here. We are all going to have to do our bit in looking after Mother Nature. Carbon tax and Carbon points are a governmental and corporate nonsense. But we do need to be much more conscious about pollution, and emissions, including exhaust from our cars and smoke causing fires. Perhaps that way we can arrest these developments. Reversing them is another matter.

We are likely to have to rethink what we plant, how we farm, how we fish, and how we secure our boats.

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