Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Reconnecting with our natural heritage.

June 5th is World Environment Day, which was established by the UN General Assembly in 1972 to mark the opening of the Stockholm Conference on the Human Environment. The theme for 2009 is 'Your Planet Needs You-UNite to Combat Climate Change'. This reflects the immediate need for nations to agree on a new course of action at the climate convention meeting in Copenhagen in December, and the links with overcoming poverty and the improved management of forests.

Mexico is the host country, this year, which reflects its growing role in the fight against climate change, including its growing participation in the carbon markets. A leading partner in UNEP's Billion Tree Campaign, Mexico, with the support of its President and people, has spearheaded the pledging and planting of some 25% of the trees in that campaign. Mexico accounts for roughly 1.5 % of global greenhouse gas emissions, and the country is demonstrating its commitment to climate change on several fronts.

While I applaud the numerous global and national "days" dedicated to environmental concerns and awareness, we need to involve ourselves in these issues on a daily basis. We need to have a global "Shift Your Attitude" Day to impress on people the need to change the way we think about our environment and our place in it.

The first step is to stop thinking of ourselves as separate from nature. We ARE nature, we ARE our environment. The only separation is in our own minds. Earth is life and the source of our sustenance. Sustenance can be defined as: the act of sustaining : the state of being sustained :a supplying or being supplied with the necessities of life. Which brings us back to the ongoing issue of sustainability.

For humans to live sustainably, the Earth's resources must be used at a rate at which they can be replenished. Humans, until recently, lived in harmony with their environment, and primitive peoples still respect this basic premise of life. As a materialistic society with unchecked population growth, we have exhausted the earth's ability to replenish itself.

The delicate balance necessary for any natural system to survive has been severely compromised. With this in mind there is an imperative need for humans to understand their connectedness to their world and everything on it. As my friend, Andrew, so eloquently put it:

"There have been moments of grace though. The quiet time first thing in the morning when I’m able to connect with the beauty of nature that surrounds me. The silence punctuated by bird song and the wind through the trees."

"That is the way of nature. There is perfection as we look not only closely at the plants but also at the panoramas of the bigger picture."

In keeping with the "bigger picture" there is a calendar of global environmental events available here. My challenge to you, the reader, is to start making a positive impact NOW, by shifting your attitude and awareness about your place in the environment. Reconnect with your natural human heritage.

Until next time...become the change you imagine.

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