• Richard

Environmental Activists Under Threat 📽 : Profit Motive out of Control

Updated: Jan 15, 2018

Caring for and protecting the natural world, unfortunately, comes at a cost. From being labelled a "greenie", "tree hugger" to an out-and-out misanthrope, it is still a position to take that appears to invariable swim against the mainstream. In many parts of the world, however, as the widely worshipped "profit at all costs" imperative clashes with conservationists and traditional farmers alike, an even greater threat is being faced. Defenders of the environment are victims of threats, intimidation and even the credible threat of being killed.

This issue, perhaps, came most to light after the murder of indigenous activist Berta Caceres in Honduras - the most dangerous country in the world or engaging in activism. The project she endeavoured to stop was a proposed massive dam that would not only have devastated a watershed forever, but also destroyed the downstream native people's way of life. (The WP report may be found here).

Berta's story in brief [1:23]:

Examples abound across the world, with elephant herds needing to be protected with deadly force from the lucrative and highly resourceful poaching networks to native Americans defending their holy land and sacred rivers on land ostensibly designated for Indigenous governance as part of the much-publicized #NODAPL protests (More info here.)

The L.A. times has a numerous examples of quality journalism on this subject; they may be found at http://www.latimes.com/projects/la-fg-environmental-activists/

The common theme is clear: short term commercial interests (generally aided by government figurative and literal muscle) all too often supersede the well-being of ecological systems and the rights of land-holders.

When will we realise - truly realise - that there is no long-term future for the economy, and certainly not for greedy shareholders, unless the health of the planet and it's life-supporting systems is placed at the apex of competing interests? This is a truly difficult question to answer. We must remain hopeful that we will collectively find wisdom to guide our decision-making, before it is too late.