Category Archives: New Attitude to Nature

Forests are our Friends


We must learn to have a new attitude to nature. That includes a new attitude to our forests. Forests are our friends. As David Attenborough said about forests, “They are the best technology nature has for locking up carbon.”


Once more what is good for nature is good for us.  What is good for forests is good for us.  Forests are a wonderful source of bio-diversity and bio-diversity is essential for human health on the planet. Some people say happy wife happy life. I am not stupid enough to quarrel with that. I just want to add, happy forest happy life.


Forests will be a vital part of any recovery we can make of the natural world. They provide two very important things that will be vital for the recovery. First, forests are very important in storing carbon rather than releasing it into the atmosphere. They are among the best of our technology. If we are going to hold down to a minimum the effects of climate change we must take advantage of the things forests can do to help. Secondly, forests are critically important for maintaining bio-diversity. We are losing our biodiversity at a stunning rate. We must stop deforestation everywhere for both of these reasons. Both of these processes work well together.

Costa Rica provides an example of what must be done. Early in the 20th century more than was 75% of Costa Rica was forested. By the 1980s this was reduced to ¼.   Costa Rica realized this was unwise and made serious efforts to change the depletion of the forests. Costa Rica encouraged land owners to plant trees. This turned out to be remarkably effective. According to Attenborough,

“In just 25 years the forest of Costa Rica has returned to cover half of Costa Rica once again. Just imagine if we achieved this on a global scale. The return of the trees would absorb as much as 2/3rds of the carbon emissions that have been pumped into the atmosphere by our activities to date. With all of these things, there is one overriding principle: nature is our biggest ally and our greatest inspiration. We just have to do what nature has always done. It worked out the secret of life long ago. In this world a species can only thrive if everything around it thrives too. We can solve the problems we now face by embracing this reality. If we take care of nature, nature will take care of us. It is now time for our species to stop simply growing and establish a life on this planet in balance with nature, to start thrive .

This applies to us as well. We will only thrive if nature around us thrives.

Of course, it is not just forests that are important. Nature is important. People not so much. People think we are important. We are wrong. If nature does not thrive, we do not thrive. It really is that simple.


Farming Smart: The Dutch Way


If you recall,  as I learned when I arrived in Arizona earlier this year, David Attenborough was pointing the way towards a new attitude to nature. Part of this project involved the Dutch.

The Dutch are smart. The Netherlands is one of the most densely populated places on earth. Their land is filled with mainly family home farming operations. There is really little land left over for more farming, Therefore, they have to be smart. As David Attenborough said,

“Dutch farmers have become expert at getting the most out of while at the same time every hectare of farm land. Increasingly they are doing so sustainably, raising yields tenfold in 2 generations while at the same time using less water, fewer pesticides, less fertilizer and emitting less carbon! Despite its size the Netherlands is now the world’s second largest exporter of foods! It is entirely possible for us to apply high tech and low tech to produce much more food from much less land.”


It is difficult to deny that Dutch farmers are smart. As I learned from one of my Dutch clients, before I became a recovering lawyer,  Dutch farmers manage to have intensive livestock operations while minimizing the impact on their environment.  Because their country is  small they cannot waste land.  Intensive livestock operations emit a lot of unpleasant   odours and chemicals. At least in Canada.  Yet Dutch farmers have such operations right next to residential areas largely without complaints from the residents. They have learned how to manage farm odours, and chemicals, and not just carbon emissions. In Canada we do this by using more land and keeping neighbours apart from each other. We should try to be smarter instead. Like the Dutch.

Attenborough also said “we must learn to produce food in new places such as indoors within cities. Even in places where there is no land at all.”  For example, we must learn to farm vertically. Or produce food in the ocean. Some farmers are already doing this. More must do that. The smarter we get the more burgers we can eat.

Attenborough also said, “As we learn to farm smarter, we can reverse the land grab we have been involved in ever since we began to farm, because we have an urgent need for all that free land.”

This really is a new attitude to nature. It requires us to be smarter.


Chief Seattle: An Old Attitude to nature can provide a New Attitude to Nature


A few years ago, in New Zealand I purchased a poster containing the complete text of the response by Chief Seattle to the President of United States to his offer to purchase land from his tribe, which I posted about yesterday.  I had only read part of it before.  It was one of the most eloquent statements I have ever heard about a genuine approach to nature that was, to some extent, the position of  many North American indigenous people.  It was radically different from the approach of the arriving Europeans.

I recognize that there is controversy over the extent to which this version or any other version accurately records what Chief Seattle said to the President, but I believe the general tenor of the letter records a profound philosophy which I am content to ascribe to Chief Seattle as I don’t know who better deserves the credit for it. I certainly think the thoughts deserve our attention.

The renowned English philosopher A. N. Whitehead once said, “The safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.” I think the same things can be said about Chief Seattle. At least as far as environmental philosophy goes. And to think I learned absolutely nothing of it in 4 years of university studying philosophy, proving how deficient my education was at that time, nearly 50 years ago.

Chief Seattle was a Suquamish and Duwamish chief in what we now call western North America. The city of Seattle, in the U.S. state of Washington, was named after him.

As Chief Seattle said,


“We are part of the earth and it is part of us.

The perfumed flowers are our sisters; the deer, the horse, the great eagle, these are our brothers.

The rocky crests, the juices in the meadows, the body heat of the pony, and man—all belong to the same family.”


Another way of saying is to say we are all kin. All people and all creatures of the natural world are kin. This basic premise has profound philosophical consequences. For if we recognize that we are all kin we ought to treat each other, and other creatures too, with respect.  I will get to Darwin later, for he gave the scientific basis for this view. I cherish the idea that indigenous philosophy and western science are deeply interwoven. Realizing that also has profound consequences.

To many of the First Nations of North America, they saw themselves as a part of their world.  Their philosophies vary from tribe to tribe, but a common thread, is the recognition that the Earth is our Mother and we are all together. We are all connected. We are all part of Mother Earth. Earth is not separate and apart from us. We are woven together.  This is profound fellow feeling. This philosophy recognizes that what we do to nature we do to ourselves. That is what I call affinity.


This idea also has profound significance in the history of religious thought.  The Indo-European word “religio , which is the root of the word religion, means “linkage” or “connection” and is in my view the basis of all major religions. In fact, it is the core of all religions. More on this later.

I never learned any indigenous philosophy while I pursued a 4 year Honours Arts program in philosophy and English literature. I never even heard of indigenous philosophy. I did not even think such a thing was possible.

This philosophy echoes or even sums up much of what I have learned over the years, starting with German philosopher Martin Heidegger’s concept of being-in-the-world.  Only Chief Seattle was much more clear and easier to understand, without being any less profound than Martin Heidegger.  The natives of North America often felt a deep connection to the land.  They felt that they were a part of it.  To the Europeans on the other hand, nature was a resource ready to be exploited.  And from these two disparate attitudes springs much that is wrong with western society.

This is an old attitude to nature, which I am proposing as a new attitude to nature. It owuld be a worthy replacement for the old western attitude,.

Chief Seattle’s statement is a stunning statement about humans and nature, and all the more amazing because a “savage” (as he was wrongly called made it in 1854. Who was the savage?


Chief Seattle


Let me say at the outset that I am a white guy so what you read here is my interpretation of indigenous philosophy. Everyone should talk to indigenous people or read their own works to get the perspective of indigenous people about indigenous philosophy.  I think their philosophy is important and worth everyone’s attention. That is why I am giving my interpretation, but it is not intended to displace indigenous perspectives about their own philosophy.

I will start with a famous work of indigenous philosophy often attributed to Chief Seattle a famous indigenous chief. The I will give my views on it.

The Earth is Precious


How can you buy or sell the sky, the warmth of the land?  The idea is strange to us.

If we do not own the freshness of the air and the sparkle of the water, how can you buy them?


All Sacred


Every part of this earth is sacred to my people.

Every shining pine needle, every sandy shore, every mist in the dark woods, every clearing and humming insect is holy in the memory and experience of my people.  The sap which courses through the trees carries the memories of the red man.

The white man’s dead forget the country of their birth when they go to walk among the stars.  Our dead never forget this beautiful earth, for it is the mother of the red man.

We are part of the earth and it is part of us.

The perfumed flowers are our sisters; the deer, the horse, the great eagle, these are our brothers.

The rocky crests, the juices in the meadows, the body heat of the pony, and man—all belong to the same family.


Not easy


So when the Great Chief in Washington sends word that he wishes to buy our land, he asks much of us.  The Great Chief sends word he will reserve us a place so that we can live comfortably to ourselves.

He will be our father and we will be his children.  So we will consider your offer to buy our land.

But it will not be easy.  For this land is sacred to us.

This shining water that moves in the streams and rivers is not just water but the blood of our ancestors.

If we sell you land, you must remember that it is sacred and that each ghostly reflection in the clear water of the lakes tells of events and memories in the life of my people.

The water’s murmur is the voice of my father’s father.




The rivers are our brothers; they quench our thirst.  The rivers carry our canoes, and feed our children.  If we sell you our land, you must remember, and teach your children, that the rivers are our brothers, and yours, and you must henceforth give the rivers the kindness you would give any brother.

We know that the white man does not understand our ways.  One portion of land is the same to him as the next, for he is a stranger who comes in the night and takes from the land whatever he needs.

The earth is not his brother, but his enemy, and when he has conquered it, he moves on.

He leaves his father’s graves behind, and he does not care.  He kidnaps the earth from his children, and he does not care.

His father’s grave, and his children’s birthright, are forgotten.  He treats his mother, the earth, and this brother, the sky, as things to be bought, plundered, sold, like sheep or bright beads.

His appetite will devour the earth and leave behind only a dessert.

I do not know. Our ways are different from your ways.

The sight of your cities pains the eyes of the red man.  But perhaps it is because the red man is a savage and does not understand.

There is no quiet place in the white man’s cities.  No place to hear the unfurling of leaves in spring, or the rustle of an insect’s wings.

But perhaps it is because I am a savage and do not understand.

The clatter only seems to insult the ears.  And what is there to life if a man cannot hear the lonely cry of the whippoorwill or the arguments of the frogs around a pond at night?  I am a red man and do not understand.

The Indian prefers the soft sound of the wind darting over the face of a pond, and the smell of the wind itself, cleaned by a midday rain, or scented with the pinon pine.




The air is precious to the red man, for all things share the breath—the beast, the tree, the man, they all share the same breath.

The white man does not seem to notice the air he breathes.  Like a many dying for many days, he is numb to the stench.

But if we sell you our land, you must remember that the air is precious to us, that the air shares it spirit with all the life it supports.  The wind that gave our grandfather his first breath also receives his last sigh.

And if we sell you our land, you must keep it apart and sacred, as a place where even the white man can to taste the wind that is sweetened by the meadow’s flowers.


One condition


So we will consider your offer to buy our land.  If we decide to accept, I will make one condition:  the white man must treat the beasts of this land as his brothers.

I am a savage and I do not understand any other way.

I have seen a thousand rotting buffaloes on the prairie, left by the white man who shot them from a passing train.

I am a savage and do not understand how the smoking iron horse can be more important than the buffalo that we kill only to stay alive.

Why is man without beasts?  If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of the spirit.

         For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man.  All things are connected.


The Ashes


You must teach your children that the ground beneath their feet is the ashes of your grandfathers.  So that they will respect the land, tell your children that the earth is rich with the lives of our kin.

Teach your children what we have taught our children, that the earth is our mother.

Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of the earth.  If men spit upon the ground they spit upon themselves.

This is we know:  The earth does not belong to man; man belongs to the earth.  This we know.

All things are connected like the blood which unites one family.  All things are connected.

Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of he earthMan did not weave the web of life; he is merely a strand in it.  Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.

Even the white man, whose God walks and talks with him as friend to friend, cannot be exempt from the common destiny.

We may be brothers after all.

We shall see.

One thing we know, which one the white man may one day discover—our God is the same God.

You may think now that you own Him as you wish to own our land; but you cannot.  He is the God of man, and His compassion is equal for the red man and the white.

This earth is precious to Him, and to harm the earth is to heap contempt on its Creator.

The whites too shall pass: perhaps sooner than all other tribes.  Contaminate your bed, and you will one night suffocate in your own waste.

But in your perishing you will shine brightly, fired by the strength of the God who brought you to this land and for some special purpose gave you dominion over this land and over the red man.

That destiny is a mystery to us, for we do not understand when the buffalo are all slaughtered, the wild horses are tamed, the secret corners of the forest heavy with the scent of many men, and the view of the ripe hills blotted by talking wires.

Where is the thicket?  Gone.

Where is the eagle?  Gone.

The end of living and the beginning of survival.



I have been blogging about a new attitude to nature.  The ancient attitude of indigenous people as exemplified by Chief Seattle in my mind sums up that new attitude to nature.

The Ocean is our Friend

All life on the planet relies on our oceans for survival. As David Attenborough said,

“The animal world can’t operate without a healthy ocean and neither can we. The ocean is a critical ally in our battle to reduce carbon in the atmosphere. The more diverse it is the better it does its job.”


The nations of the world recognized in 2022 at the UN conference on bio-diversity, held in Canada, that bio-diversity was vital to the world but was under attack by human activity.

The ocean is also a vital source of food and again, that source is under siege as a result of human actions. The healthier our oceans are the more food it can supply. What’s bad for the ocean is bad for us too.

Our world with its growing populations needs all the healthy food it can get. We must be careful not to ruin good sources of food. It would be in our best interests to conserve those sources, including clearly, the oceans.

Palau is an island nation that recognized the importance of its marine life and also recognized that the marine life was disappearing. As a result, it established reserves where fishing was not permitted. Consequently, those actions were so successful that the fish population increased substantially. In fact, fish populations were so healthy and abundant that marine life spilled over into unprotected areas where fishers could catch the prey. The local fishers benefited as their coral reefs recovered too. That is a win/win situation, to use an over-worked phrase. Why don’t we do that around the world?

According to Attenborough,

Estimates suggest, that no fish zones in one third of our coastal seas would be sufficient to provide all the fish we will ever need.  In international waters, the UN is attempting to create the biggest no fish zone of all. In one act this will transform the open ocean from a place where fish are exhausted by fishing fleets to a wilderness that will help us all in our efforts to combat climate change. The world’s greatest wildlife reserve in the world.”


And of course, at the same time, such measures will increase our supply of healthy food immensely!  And, to get mushy, millions of fish will be happier.

The ocean is our friend.


This can be done




 Sunset at Peggy’s Cove

David Attenborough reminded us in his testament statement that

 “The living world is essentially solar powered. The world’s plants capture 3 trillion kilowatt hours of solar energy each day. Almost 20 times the energy we need just from sun light. Imagine if we phase out of fossil fuels and run our world on the eternal energy of the natural energy of the sun too.”

Of course, we could add wind and geothermal and other unlimited sources of energy. We could transform the world. For example, Morocco used to get all of its energy from foreign oil and gas and now it gets 40% of energy from internal natural renewable sources. It might be an exporter of energy to Europe by 2015. By 2015 renewables are predicted to be the main source of power.

However instead of changing with the times, our banks, our pension plans, our business leaders, and some of our governments, like Canada are investing Bigly in fossil fuels. Canada spent billions on a gas pipeline as it promised to get off fossil fuels.

Renewables are also a smart investment for many reasons. The energy will be more affordable. It will make our cities quieter and with cleaner air. We never have to worry about running out of sunlight and wind and heat from under the ground. Added to that, we won’t be subject to extortion from undemocratic dictators like Putin or sheiks from the Middle east when we rely on renewables obtained from inside our own borders. Currently air pollution is a major health consequence of our reliance on fossil fuels when there is a better way. We can avoid many of these problems if we switch our reliance on fossil fuels to renewable energy. Yet we find that difficult.

We have to change our attitudes so that we can change our ways.

Re-wild the Planet

David Attenborough in his testament statement on  his show A Life on the Planet, said there was a straightforward way out of our world crisis. I found this very difficult to believe.  He said we had to re-wild the planet and we could do it, so that 100 years from now the planet will be wild again.

One of my favorite environmental writers, George Monbiot, a columnist for the The Guardian said something similar. Since two of my favorite environmentalists made a similar statement, I decided I should pay attention.

Attenborough said every species reaches a natural limit of its population. That is the population that can be supported by our planet. Anything more makes our life here unsustainable.

Because there is nothing restricting us, during my lifetime, the human population has been growing dramatically. During my lifetime so far, the population has grown from approximately 2.5 billion people to 8.2 billion. That is a pretty big increase. Scientists are predicting that there will be 11 billion people on earth by 2100. That is about when my youngest granddaughter will reach 80 years old (I hope).

We could stop population growth before it reaches that point. Japan has stopped its population growth. They are actually worrying about not having enough people and are encouraging their citizens to have more children, but the people of Japan are resisting.

The birth rate fell in the last half of the 20th century as their standard of living grew. Their population growth has stabilized. Attenborough says, there are signs that it is happening around the world. The number of children being born around the world and the growth of the population is about to level off. It is likely that the population growth of the world will peak in the near future for the first time. That will make everything we have to do easier, says Attenborough. But not easy.

What we need to do is help people to live better! In other words, we should help people get out of poverty, give all access to health care, and enabling people, girls in particular, to stay in school as long as possible, we can make the world’s population peak sooner and at a lower level.


Why wouldn’t we want to do that?  Many will say they don’t want to pay for this. But this would benefit all of us! Not just those in the poorer countries. All of us benefit from this approach! We should help others to reach these goals for our selfish reasons! Because it will be good for us!


But we have to raise the standard of living of people around the world without raising their impact. Attenborough says there are ways that we can do this. That is the challenge.


Attenborough Begins to Rail


David Attenborough for most of his career did not preach or rail.  He thought he could make the best contribution to life on our planet by showing us the natural world in all of its beauty and glory, while not hiding the challenges we face. He thought we would catch on and that railing or preaching would not be productive.

Then in the last couple of years he changed his point of view. In fact, he was hired as the representative of the people for climate change and in 2018 spoke eloquently at the UN Climate Change Conference in his new role. He realized his old role was not effective enough. He pointed out that he had been extraordinarily lucky in his life and chosen profession. He also admitted he would feel awfully guilty if he saw the problems, as he had done, and then chose to ignore them. He could not do that anymore.

In his speech to the conference, referring to climate change,  he said this:

“Right now, we are facing a man-made disaster of global scale. Our greatest threat in thousands of years. If we don’t take action the collapse of our civilizations and much of the natural world is on our horizon.”


 Attenborough also attended the meeting of the über wealthy at Davos Switzerland in 2019. There he showed a film with some horrific scenes. It showed walruses pushed to the edge of a cliff where some of them fell over, bouncing on the rocks to their violent death. The attendees had a very difficult time watching the scenes. So did I as I watched the video. Many people averted or covered their eyes. It was too painful and horrible for them to look. But looking away is not the answer. Is it?

In his television series Our Planet, he said,

We are facing the collapse of the living world the very thing that gave birth to our civilization…It is the very thing we rely upon for all of the elements of the lives we lead. No one wants this to happen. None of us can afford for it to happen. So what do we do? It’s quite straightforward. It’s been staring us in the face all along. To restore stability to our planet we must restore its biodiversity. The very thing that we’ve removed. It’s the only way out of this crisis that we’ve created. We must re-wild the world.”


I’m not sure its straight-forward, but I know it certainly is not simple.  It is our consumption that has caused this situation and that is tied to almost everything we do as a species.

The first step, as I have been saying, is to change our attitude to nature. That is the fundamental problem. We started out on the wrong foot and will never recover, unless we go back and start on the right foot.

A Long Think


Since I was born in 1948 animal populations have been reduced by more than one half. We have destroyed the wild world that was. Our species has done this. Perhaps Professor John Moriarty is right—we are like an Aids virus of the planet. It seems difficult to deny this. Our species has overrun the planet. We have a lot on our conscience. Whenever Huckleberry Finn had a serious thing to consider, like whether or not to continue floating down the Mississippi River deeper into the south, a place of great danger for his friend Jim, he said, this deserves “a long think.”

David Attenborough called the statement he made in his documentary film Our Planet, a witness statement. He wanted to summarize what he had seen and what the consequences were of what he had seen. That statement was a story of global decline during a single lifetime. His lifetime. It was a lifetime I have shared. I have experienced the same thing. I will summarize what he said.


Here is a photograph of a sunset, for a world turning from colour  to darkness.  I started this journey  to Arizona in 2023 wanting to explore two themes. The decline of western civilization and the decline of nature and the need for a new attitude to nature. This really is one story with 2 sides to the same page. Like 2 streams merging. It is not a happy story. It begs for us to make “a long think.”  That is what I want to do.

This story is not over. As David Attenborough said, “if we continue on our present course, then the damage that has been the defining feature of my lifetime will be eclipsed by the damage coming in the next.” In other words, though things were bad during my lifetime, they will be much worse during the lifetime of my granddaughter. Her world will be greatly impoverished compared to mine. And that is what we have left her.

In 2020 when this photo was taken, the world population reached 7.8 billion, the carbon in the atmosphere reached 415 parts per million, and the remaining wilderness was reduced to 35% of what it once was.

Extrapolating what David Attenborough said, science predicts that my granddaughter who was born 4 in  years ago is likely to witness the following:

In the 2030s, the Amazon rainforest will be degraded to such an extent that it won’t produce enough rain to remain a rain forest but instead will survive as a dry savannah. This will bring catastrophic species loss. This will seriously disrupt the global water cycle.  Not just in the Amazon, but around the world. The Arctic will become ice free in the summer. The speed of global warming will increase as a result because less of the sunlight will be reflected back into space when all that white snow and ice disappears. This will create a global feedback loop.

In the 2040s frozen soils will collapse and release vast amounts of frozen methane. It is a greenhouse gas that is much more potent than CO2.  Of course, this will dramatically increase the rate of climate change—another feedback loop that we will have created.

In the 2050s as the oceans continue to heat up and get more acidic, coral reefs where 25% of the oceans’ marine life now lives, will die, causing immense loss of that marine life. Ocean populations will crash.

In the 2080s, when my granddaughter will reach my lofty age, soils will become exhausted, if they will not have been exhausted before then, and food production will plummet, even though populations will have risen dramatically. What kind of political upheavals will that create? Pollinating insects will disappear, again drastically reducing food production. The weather will become more and more extreme.

In the 2100s the planet will become 4ºC warmer, rendering large parts of the earth uninhabitable. Hundreds of millions of people, perhaps more, will be rendered homeless. Where will all those climate refugees go? What struggles will they encounter with people who don’t want to let them in? What havoc will they bring in their wake? What will life be like on the planet then?

It is likely that a 6th mass extinction event has already started. And this time, unlike the first 5 of such events, the cause will be us.  We will be the producers of that massacre of life on the planet.

As David Attenborough said, “Within the span of the next lifetime, the security and stability of the Holocene, our Garden of Eden, will be lost.” 

That is the lifetime my granddaughter can look forward to. And she can thank me, and my generation for what we have done. Imagine that. I can’t!

We can’t let this happen. We need to make a long think!

Our Planet


In his testament statement in the PBS film Our Planet, David Attenborough pointed out something interesting, namely, that,

 “a change in atmospheric carbon was a feature of all 5 mass extinctions. In previous events it had taken volcanic activity up to 1 million years to dredge up enough carbon from within the earth to trigger a catastrophe. By burning millions of years of organic organisms all at once, it we had managed to do so in less than 200.

The amount of carbon in the atmosphere is extremely important.

 Until then the ocean had been able to absorb all of that carbon, masking our impact. It was clear to scientists that the earth was beginning to lose its balance. The ocean was no longer able to absorb all of that carbon we have been spewing into the atmosphere. As a result, the mild Holocene epoch, that was so favourable to human life,  was drawing to a close much sooner than expected.

Attenborough and his television crews, like others,  had noticed that things were changing rapidly in the Arctic. Places they could not reach before were now easily accessible. The northern pole was much different than it was. And by 2011 the reasons for the change were well established. As a result, the global temperature is 1ºC warmer than it was when David Attenborough and John Neufeld were born.  Although 1ºC does not seem like much of a change, we must remember that ‘it took less warming, 6 degrees C (10.8 degrees F), to lift the world out of the Ice Age… That’s the profundity of the change we’re talking about.” In other words, a 1 ºC global average temperature is a very big deal. Some scientific studies have said we are already on track for a 5 ºC average global temperature rise.

 We have no reason to be glib about a 1 ºC rise in global average temperature rise in my lifetime! This speed of change exceeds anything that has happened in the last 10,000 years, when the world was embedded in an Ice Age.

 In the last 40 years, the polar ice has been reduced by 40%. I have been married for more than 50 years. The fact is, as David Attenborough said, “the planet is losing its ice.” Though I have lost my attraction for ice, this is not a good thing. This is a very dangerous thing. As Attenborough said,

 “this most pristine and distant of ecosystems is headed for disaster. Our impact is now truly global.  Our impact now truly profound. Our blind assault on the planet has finally come to affect the very fundamentals of our world.”


It is time we really looked closely at our impact on the planet. That impact is incredible. And incredibly dangerous! As Attenborough said,

“We have overfished 30% of fish stocks to critical levels. We cut down over 15 billion trees each year. By damning, polluting, and over-extracting rivers and lakes we’ve reduced the fresh water populations by over 80%. We are replacing the wild with the tame. Half of the fertile land of the earth is now farmland. 70% of the mass of birds on this planet are now domestic birds, the vast majority chickens. We account for over one third of the weight of mammals on earth. A further 60% are the animals we raise to eat. The rest, from mice to whales, make up just 4%. This is now our planet, run by humankind  for humankind.  There is little left for the rest of the world.”

We are really turning this planet into “our planet.” One species–humans–is doing this. We are changing the planet in a big way. Do we know what we are doing?

Who among us thinks this makes sense?  Who among us could deny that we need—urgently need—a new attitude to nature?