On the holiday beach and around your favourite café tables, there’s a conversation that needs having. It’s about the future of nature and other minor details affecting you and your only planet.
It seems increasingly odd, that the best hours of the best days of the best years of many environmentalist’s lives have been absorbed in a peculiar effort, using human’s position of supremacy to pit bits of nature against each other.
Like many things, it began with the pursuit of profit. In the day, who could argue against a profitable possum industry?
But what was good business came at a terrible price to nature, in this case driving our feathered species to rarity and extinction. So now we unleash a stable of poisons to kill these demonised furry animals in hopes of giving the winged chosen a fighting chance.
Is conservation all about playing at being god of Aotearoa, by killing one to protect another? Or is it possible that persistently pursuing furry evils has distracted some of us from more pressing matters? Our consumption driven, collapse-prone economy springs to mind.
For such a small land, we’re in the top ten in terms of ecological footprint per person. This unthinking consumption coupled with a business system that rewards short-term profits at the expense our rivers, soils and skies is no doubt sending our planet into a death spiral.
As a people, we should not be in a position of having an economy that grows only at the expense of the environment, the very air we breathe and water we drink.
As we re-build the engines of commerce from their crumpling carcasses, we need to build an economy that grows in tune with nature rather than against it.
And that is a matter of political leadership, as the technology is here, far ahead of the politicians, and evolving fast.
A world with a clean and green is totally possible, if we are willing to temper greed and harness the great potential of New Zealand to paths favouring clean business practices.
So, are we better pumping poisons for the sake of a few feathered species; or empowering sustainable economies which don’t cost the earth and will offer the best long term protections for nature in New Zealand, whether that nature be of native or exotic hue?
Perhaps we’ll need another cup of coffee to figure that one out!