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    The amount written about the environment and what needs to be done is staggering.  We’ll file this report under the heading “Oh Sh*t were screwed” column for the sake of convenience.  The only limits humanity respects are those of a distinctly Malthusian nature.  I’d add to his general work by saying that we, as a species, tend to do something until it comes back and bites us in the ass while kicking us in the teeth and laughing.  Then and only then we might get a clue and reorder our policy with regards to not scheduling another ass-kicking  session for ourselves.  The problem, we live in a short-term political/economic cycle that at its very base encourages short term solutions and policy based on staying in power rather than any sort of rational stewardship the environment and ultimately our lives.

Did you know why the green movement is such a joke?  It’s because we still have the bounty of the earth at our finger tips.  We can not or will not connect the dots about the destruction of our biosphere aka…the conditions necessary for our species to survive.  Let me assure you the day will come when the Green Parties in North America take power, right about the time when scarcity of food and potable water make basic survival a pressing concern.

Enter Malthus and his “misery and vice”.   Of course, the rich will won’t give a flying fig in the beginning.  The grandiose structures of their wealth will keep them intact for awhile, of course backed by the coercive apparatus of the state, but those will crumble and fall into ruin as the carrying capacity of the Earth plummets.  Money just isn’t that nourishing.   I’m hoping that we in Canada won’t hit the wall during my lifetime because once the poo hits the fan, the radical reorganization of our society will reflect a new set of priorities that have little to do with ‘advancement’ and ‘civilization’.

Anyhow, as we dance merrily toward oblivion the UN has decided to call out some of the more obvious signs as we trundle ever more quickly to the collapse of our current way of life.

“Two weeks before the start of a global conference on sustainable development in Rio de Janeiro, the United Nations is warning that progress has stalled on key environmental goals the world’s nations have set for themselves, like tackling climate change, combating desertification and protecting biodiversity.

“The world continues to speed down an unsustainable path despite over 500 internationally agreed goals and objectives to support the sustainable management of the environment and improve human well-being,” the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP) said when it released its Global Environmental Outlook Wednesday.

The world has made progress on only four out of 90 of the most pressing environmental goals and objectives agreed upon as part of the Millennium Development Goals and other international pacts, the UNEP said.”

Well, four out of ninety isn’t that bad.  I mean, someone needs to win the green participation ribbon when it comes to maintaining the Earth as a suitable place to live.

“Little to no progress was made on climate change-related goals such as limiting the increase in average global temperature to less than two degrees above pre-industrial levels or in areas such as revitalization of depleted fish stocks, protection of biodiversity and the combating of desertification.”

     People want to live like North Americans, outside the bounds of reasonable consumption, insulated to the consequences of our gradual fouling of the nest. 

“Overall, the world is failing to stem the loss of biodiversity, with about 20 per cent of vertebrate species under threat and some natural habitats shrinking by more than 20 per cent since the 1980s.

“We have failed,” said Elizabeth Thompson, executive co-ordinator for the upcoming Rio conference, dubbed Rio+20. “We have not properly mainstreamed the issue of sustainable development as a way of living, doing business. That is the overall reason why we have not made the kind of progress that we should have.”

What a nice way of saying we are a greedy parasitical species that is slowly digging the hole that civilization will fall into with our unrealistic expectations and desires.  I think I want that my tombstone – My news of me and my death has not been properly mainstreamed….  Jesus-frak. Spare us the verbbing of nouns and just spell out how irresponsible we actually are.

“The report also produced regional outlooks. It singled out North America and Europe for their “unsustainable levels of consumption” and highlighted that North America lags behind other parts of the world when it comes to use of renewable energy.

The greatest threats for Asia, Africa and the Pacific are rapid urbanization and population growth coupled with increasing consumption, which are putting stress on already dwindling natural resources. Latin America and the Caribbean share similar worries.

Thompson said that the Rio conference is supposed to be a “transforming moment.”

The Rio conference will take place in Brazil from June 20 to June 22 and will mark the 20th anniversary of the first Earth Summit, or United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio in 1992.”

I cannot wait for the wisdom that issues forth from this great summit of the minds.  It won’t matter a whit. What I can guarantee though that once Mr.Malthus comes calling “misery and vice” will be all the frakking rage for a very long time.



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