What now?

Mt. Baker

My mind is consumed with thoughts of fear. In light of the catastrophe in Japan right now, I am considering all my possible options in case of nuclear fallout. That is but one possible cause for concern among others though, as I wonder if the earthquake across the Pacific has moved to relieve, or increase pressure on the tectonic plates of the ring of fire. The photo above was taken about 4 blocks from my home, the volcano itself is only about 35-40 miles away. Though islands might protect my town from a potential tsunami caused by an offshore earthquake, there is still a huge potential for damage if an earthquake strikes here, and of course, if the volcano blows. I must say, I feel much more comfortable with the thought of being consumed by a mountain of ash and fire, than of breathing in unseen particles of unstable atoms who’s nuclei will burn my organs from the inside out. There’s something about fear of the natural world that is compelling to me, because it is reasonable. I mean, I know where I live…I know the potential dangers of living in this part of the world. If somethings happens, it’s really my own damn fault, and my own problem. It is the unnatural dangers that leave that sick and twisted feeling in my gut, leaving me to wonder how the hell humanity has come so far in some ways yet is so backwards in other ways. Japan is one of the world’s most earthquake, and tsunami prone regions in the world, and yet it has some 55 operational nuclear power plants. Hmmmm… Perhaps the mountainous island could have made better use of the ocean breezes for wind power? Or perhaps they could have put less nuclear energy into the glowing signs of the cities, either way, it too late now.

While this kind of disaster is easy to criticize given the proper amount of hindsight, it still does not negate the fact that given this kind of hindsight in the past things have not changed all that much. Yes, since Chernobyl they’ve realized the importance of ‘containment vessels’ and have those over the reactors now…but what good will a man-made container do if an earthquake and tsunami have been weakening it with, quite literally, earth-shattering force? With all the pushes for greener, cleaner energy, there are still so many that want to believe that nuclear energy is safe, efficient, and effective-all because they want their modern day conveniences. It is mind boggling to me that the people in control, you know, those nameless bastards who bypass human well-being in the name of greed- haven’t figured out how to make millions off of green technologies yet. When the Exxon Valdez devastated the Alaskan coastline, did they turn their company around and become the pioneers of off-shore wind farms? Nope. They will forever be remembered in the hearts and minds of the world as the greedy S.O.B.’s that killed countless fish, aquatic animals, birds, and other wildlife because they wanted their damn money. After the gulf oil-disaster (not the first one mind you…but just the most recent one) at the Deepwater Horizon rig, BP faced a serious backlash of angry Americans, including boycotts of their petroleum products. But what are they doing now? Have they moved toward green technologies, advanced research to determine more effective ways of capping future wells, or stopped pushing to drill in deeper and deeper waters? If so, I haven’t heard a word about it. So, do the boycotts continue, or have the once-concerned-citizens moved on to complain about something else? Out of sight out of mind? Will people remember this 20 years from now as just another blip in the radar of humans’ destruction of the earth? Unfortunately, I foresee many more of these devastating, unnatural catastrophes in the near future, and I don’t see much in terms of stopping it.

Good luck world, and west coasters…

“take your protein pills and put your helmet on”.-David Bowie


About mindofthemasses

S.G. is a creative scientist that often ponders the state of the world in sad confusion. Befuddled by how far from harmony the human race has come, she tries to make sense of it all with intuition, reason, and above all else an open mind.
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