What is the biggest environmental challenge of the 21st century? Global warming? The loss of biodiversity? Resource depletion? Pollution? No one really knows. Probably the sum of all these. But I’m beginning to think one of the biggest challenges is overcoming the fact that people are tired of all the depressing news about the environment.
The prevailing scientific opinion is that we’re quite rapidly depleting many of the resources we depend on for our well-being. We’ve heard variations on these stories over and over to the point that it’s all become quite overwhelming. In fact, many people have stopped paying attention and the media has stopped reporting all but the most frightening predictions.
With a lame duck Earth Summit underway in Johannesburg… here are the opening paragraphs to a May 31, 2002 column by Dr. David Suzuki. Suzuki’s columns, published weekly in various newspapers and at his website The David Suzuki Foundation, are a consistent and informative analysis of the many daunting environmental issues. Suzuki does a remarkable job at “connecting the dots” and articulately presenting often complex scientific and societal topics related to biodiversity in a simple yet comprehensive manner.