Boy has this week got me thinking! This week in class, we were assigned to watch the film The 11th hour and read the collapse of Easter Island. Before I even watched the film or read the article, I had some knowledge regarding the environmental issues we have today. After watching the film, oh my. It did not occur to me just how damaged our planet is. The 11th hour helped me put into perspective just how much humans rely and abuse the resources that we are given from nature. The visuals and images of what our planet looks like and the science behind how global warming is drastically getting worse just blew my mind. It made me reflect on my actions and how I could be contributing to these issues. I personally believe that the pandemic we are living could be a great learning experience. It shows us how we took certain things for granted such as be able to go out with friends, travel, etc. Why don’t we see or appreciate how we are taking the Earth for granted? With the start of quarantine and the shut downs across the world, there was evidence of our planet healing. For example, in Italy, with no boats or gas in the rivers and oceans polluting the water, we saw beautiful creatures like dolphins come to the surface. Before the shut down, this would never have been possible. I think it is hard to listen to scientists or environmentalists talk about the issues that are arising on our planet because it doesn’t seem so bad based on where you might be living, I was in that boat. After watching The 11th Hour and having our discussions in class, I was finally able to visualize and imagine just how bad our environment is. In my small group discussions, we focused on some major issues that are harming the environment. I thoroughly enjoyed the small group discussions, a lot of my group members brought up some issues that I never would have even thought of. My group really focused on ‘throwaway culture’ and deforestation. It felt really great to hear my group’s thoughts on my contribution of discussing ‘throwaway culture.’ I also enjoyed the small groups because I felt like everyone was inclusive and everyone’s thoughts were heard which I think is important not only in classes but in general for everything.
My major takeaway from this week was to appreciate what we have. Earth has given us so many resources and materials to build and grow marvelous things and we are not giving anything back. We are very similar to those who lived on Easter Island. Their civilization lasted for a short amount of time and while we are still going and growing, we are not far behind if we do not take some action soon. The resources we are given are not limitless. Although sometimes it is hard to come to terms that this issue will never be fully solved, I do hope that someday, and soon, we do find better ways to clean our Earth and give back to it.