As the coronavirus continues to spread and the world watches on in shock at the rapid transformation that our global society is undergoing, many good people of the world are choosing to see the silver lining of the regeneration and, dare I say it or is it too soon, the rebirth of the planet.
I am one of them. That’s not to say that I’m forgetting the devastation the pandemic is causing on the planet at this time. My heart breaks for those who have fallen prey to the coronavirus, especially for the families of those whose lives have been claimed.
And, yet, as I witness Mother Earth drawing a sweet breath of relief after years of neglect, abuse and devastation at the hands of humanity, I am more convinced than ever that the crisis we are currently witnessing could be the end of an era and a brand new beginning for us all.
Because Mother Earth is regenerating right in front of our eyes. The pictures that came out of Venice, after the city went into shutdown, show that nature is reclaiming La Serenissima’s waterways. As the water returns to a naturally clear, blue state, shoals of fish, crabs and other plant-life are thriving.
Ducks are waddling their way around the Pizzale Roma vaporetto stop and have even made a nest. Someone has placed a sign saying, “Don’t tread on the duck eggs.” We are witnessing the unimaginable. This, in a city which has a reputation as a rip-off tourist trap for many.
As the shutdown continues, more and more pictures are surfacing on the net of nature reclaiming the land, as animals come out of hiding, and explore our empty streets.
As planes have more or less left the sky, for now, and our streets are all but empty of cars, word from both China and Italy, who began shutdowns to prevent the spread of the virus before the rest of the world, indicate a significant drop in greenhouse gas emissions above their lands. Compared with this time last year, levels of pollution in New York have been reduced by nearly 50% because of the measures put in place to contain the virus.
We have all been warned, time and time again, about the effects of climate change on our planet caused by greenhouse gas emissions. Any reduction greatly benefits our earth.
The coronavirus should be a wake-up call to each and every one of us because it proves something we have all been in denial about for years.
Yes, we can change. Yes, we have a chance to save our planet.
It’s such a shame that it took a killer virus to prove this to us all.
Yet the changes we are witnessing have and will come at a heavy price. The loss of life, first and foremost, but we must not be naive and think that the financial ramifications won’t be harsh. They will be. Millions will be pushed towards the poverty line, as their livelihoods and homes are put on the line.
Small businesses will be badly affected and many will close. For example, while Venice may be regenerating as the tourists leave her waterways alone, the effect on many of the inhabitants who rely on tourism for their livelihood will be harsh.
Which is why we have to start asking ourselves the question. As Mother Earth takes a sweet breath of relief from our ongoing human habits, what happens after the coronavirus? Are we willing to evolve to bring long-lasting change? To balance our need to survive with Mother Earth’s need to survive? Or do we begin to take steps to change our society to one that allows us to thrive and the planet along with us?
We face challenges ahead, like never before. Challenges that will require each and every one us step up to the task of ensuring both humanity’s and the planet’s survival. We need to grow wilder, my friends and return to a more natural way of living.
(c) Samantha Wilson 2020. All Rights Reserved.