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2021-08-13 21:42:24 (UTC)

Prompt 124: Healing the Earth

124. The World Meteorological Organization said in 2009 that the 2000s may have been the warmest decade since records began in 1850, adding fuel to the fire of global warming claims. Do you believe in global warming? Why or why not? What should the world do to reduce pollution and why?

Whew. It seems like all these prompts echo what's in the mainstream news lately.

To be clear: there is no longer a debate about global warming. I'd wager that the 2010s were on average warmer than the previous decade. That's not as significant as, say, the greater frequency of extreme weather events: a severe side-effect of global warming and climate change.

What should the world do to reduce pollution, and why? Hmm. Where to begin... Stop making so many people, perhaps? That would reduce the necessity of constantly working for a living. A reduction in population would - rather quickly and significantly, I surmise - reduce consumption of the planet in general. It would reduce costs to individual families reducing the strain on public services and assistance.

Personally, I'm of the opinion that anyone who deliberately has children in this day and age is either stupid, selfish, or both. But I suppose that's a discussion for another prompt. I'm feeling sour enough as it is. But I digress.

When there is less strain on the natural world, there will be more of an opportunity for the natural world to repair itself. Plastic will eventually disintegrate in the oceans, and/or it will be easier to remove more plastic from the oceans than is being added to it. Less trees being clear-cut for housing and arable land means that trees will act as carbon sinks, repairing the air above and the soil below. Factory farming will be at the very least reduced in necessity and then capacity. Factory farmlands and monocultures will be replaced with a naturally-balanced diverse assortment of flora and fauna, since there's no need for massive legions of cows and hundreds of thousands of acres of soybeans. Plankton and plants rejuvenate, restoring health to the water and the air.

Fewer people means fewer individual cars on the road, and for less time. Fewer automobiles means less fossil fuel consumption, which means less fossil fuel harvesting. Places that depend on oil as their only export will be forced to diversify their economies. The people that remain (if anyone remains, of course) in those areas will be forced to obtain different skills to contribute and thrive, which will in turn solidify and strengthen that local economy by default.

The rich folks will still have all their toys. They'll pay health care systems to take care of them until they die. Their wealth is distributed instead of concentrated in the hands of their good-for-nothing progeny.

So, eventually the human population is naturally reduced to a more tolerable amount. Let's say about half of the current population: 4 billion. That's more than enough people to do more than enough with the planet to feel like they're still able to make progress and do stuff, as humans do. There's no urgency to make more people, to build more buildings, to turn the Earth into a concrete- and asphalt-laden mini mall.

Humans share what's left of the land with other animals, with plants, and with mountains and water. That sure sounds a hell of a lot better than what we are dealing with now. And it's quantum leaps better than what all those people who choose to have children are leaving to their kids.

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