A great tract of Earth is on fire. It looks as you might imagine hell to be. The air has turned ochre: visibility in some cities has been reduced to 30 metres. Children are being prepared for evacuation in warships; already some have choked to death. Species are going up in smoke at an untold rate. It is almost certainly the greatest environmental disaster of the 21st century – so far.
Within the last 3 weeks, such a vast area of Indonesia has been on fire that it has produced as much carbon dioxide as the entire United States economy emits in one year. Given that large areas in the region contain peat, the very ground itself is aflame; yet, the western media has been almost entirely silent about this ongoing environmental disaster. Indeed, this conflagration has become an annual event, to the extent that simply breathing is, in large swathes of Asia, now considered as dangerous as smoking 20 cigarettes a day. If it were not for the as-ever excellent work of George Monbiot, writing for that establishment rag in disguise, the Guardian, news of this ongoing catastrophe would have troubled no western ear at all. As usual, the comments section is more instructive than the article itself, to develop a sense of what is going on in the average human skull, so I shall quote you the most upvoted nugget of wisdom from this Guardian piece:
Problem is, there’s not much we can do about it. The fires aren’t taking place in the western countries and they aren’t asking for help.
What should we do? Barge in? Uselessly demand they deal with it better? It’s not going to happen. Yes it’s a tragedy that many irreplaceable species may become extinct, but you think that will be a good argument for a country that so far doesn’t seem to care about the damage this has caused?
Ahhh, what could poor old little me do about this ongoing, annual, environmental utter disaster, dear reader? Perhaps, idiot human, you could stop paying for the destruction? It is, after all, we priveleged billion, in the first world, who are directly, personally, financially responsible, by way of our supermarket purchases, for this.
Somewhat more terrifyingly, this stunning release of CO2 isn’t even the largest happening at the moment, as shown by this live map of CO2 emissions:
Notice that giant, continent wide gusher of gas being emitted from Brazil? That would be the Amazon rain forest on fire. So completely silent are the western presstitutes on this that we have to turn to South American news for any information at all:
The region most affected has been the northern state of Amazonas, the heart of the largest rainforest in the world. The region has already seen 11,114 forest fires since January of this year – a 47 percent rise compared to the same period last year, said INPE.
According to Greenpeace, these fires has already destroyed almost half of the 1 million acre Indigenous Territory of Arariboi, and again were started deliberately, in order for someone to make money.
I had this on my wall as a kid; I never thought I would actually live to see this prophecy played out, but I am becoming ever more concerned that I am actually living through it right now, due to our collective abject moral cowardice.
What will it take for us to awaken from our
slumber nightmare, dear human?