Dr. David SUZUKI is an academic, science broadcaster and an environmental activist. He is also the recipient of the prestigious UNESCO Kalinga Prize for his work in the field of environmental science. Dr. Suzuki was invited to Hong Kong to be the speaker at the CityU Sustainability Lecture Series hosted by Department of Asian and International Studies (AIS) and Hall 10. The topic chosen was “Setting the Bottom Line for the Planet’s Future”.
Dr. Suzuki started off the lecture talking about the climate changes occurring in Canada, how the ice caps are melting and the forestry are disappearing. He mentioned the idiocy of the previous Prime Minister of Canada and his government’s historically miserable environmental policies.
Dr. Suzuki believes that the human species might have an abrupt end towards the end of this century. Hence we need to start building the future and it’s not too late. He gave us examples of various instances of global warming which are taking place. Carbon dioxide present in the atmosphere is being dissolved in the oceans creating carbonic acid. This carbonic acid is harmful and is creating numerous dead zones in different parts of the ocean. The death of fish leads to the death of birds and other animals causing an ecological reverberation. 80% of the planet’s forests are gone.
People don’t understand the consequences of this global warming and climate change. They don’t realize that they are digging their own graves. The problem with us human species is that we can’t avoid these negative consequences because we don’t know enough or have substantial information to anticipate the effects of our invention. Dr. Suzuki gave us an example of the invention of DDT. DDT was invented to kill insects and pests which would damage crops. What the inventor of DDT did not know was that it would affect the food chain and be the reason for the depletion in the number of Eagles. Another example was the invention of CFC. Although CFC proved to be extremely useful in the market, it caused the started to destroy the ozone layer.
“We are at a pivotal point where our actions will determine our own existence.” The above statement made by Dr. Suzuki is undeniable. We are undergoing and existential crisis. The Earth’s temperature will rise by 3-4 Degree Celsius by the end of this century and with the population growth at it’s all time high, there is a very little chance that our race can survive. We need to start taking responsibility and try to build a better future for the generations to come.
Writer: Suhas YOGISH (Jockey Club Academy Hall)
Image: Metro News Toronto
文: Suhas YOGISH (賽馬會群智堂)
譯: 陳妍宇 (舍堂十)
圖: Metro News Toronto