How polluters see nature versus how non-polluters do

October 16, 2022 by Joshua
in Models, Nature

I just watched a documentary, La Foret d’Ebo. One of the people who lives in the Ebo forest in Cameroon says: “The Ebo forest requires strong protection, for us and for generations to come. I never would have thought that one day someone would try to sell the Ebo forest. Ever since I found out I have been wondering why. If we are alive today, it is only because of the forest.”

Repeating for emphasis: “If we are alive today, it is only because of the forest.

Compare Alex Epstein’s The Moral Case for Fossil Fuels. He wrote, “One crucial truth is that climate is naturally volatile and dangerous. Absent a modern, developed civilization, any climate will frequently overwhelm human beings with climate-related risks—extreme heat, extreme cold, storms, floods—or underwhelm human beings with climate-related benefits (insufficient rainfall, insufficient warmth). Primitive peoples prayed so fervently to climate gods because they were almost totally at the mercy of the naturally volatile, dangerous climate system.”

Repeating for emphasis: “One crucial truth is that climate is naturally volatile and dangerous.

Epstein sees nature as dangerous—the nature that provides life, he fears. He sees people who lived in nature as primitive, praying for safety from what he doesn’t know brings life.

This view of nature as inherently dangerous starkly contrasts with humans living without even the wheel for three hundred thousand years, in that time populating six continents, growing from a few thousand individuals to nearly one billion without using any resources outside the biosphere, digging no deeper than plant roots. Their cultures weren’t heaven on Earth and were too diverse and varied to lump together, but in head-to-head competition people choose many of theirs over ours.

Incidentally, why are they selling the forest? From an article, Ebo Forest: A Stronghold for Cameroon’s Wildlife: “palm oil plantations are encroaching on the forest, and the government is also considering two logging concessions that would destroy much of the habitat essential to the wildlife there.”

You can bet they aren’t growing palm oil for people in the forest or Cameroon. If our culture is so abundant, why do we keep stealing their land?

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