In the 4.6 billion years of our Earth’s history, humans arejust a blip. We have been here for nearly six million years and during thisperiod, we have made an impact that cannot go unnoticed. We have changed theentire outlook of our planet.
The impact is so great that the scientists havegiven this era its own name, the “Anthropocene” or “The Age of the Humans”. Butthe question is, “have we already entered this era?” or is it something that isyet to come. Our planet is changing.
Mankind has to admit it and those ofus who have turned a blind eye to this major issue are adopting the flat earthattitude. Those of us who deny climate change are probably the descendants ofthose who believed that the earth was flat, making the same mistakes ourancestors did. Human and human force is the largest geographical force thatexists. There are two schools of thought, one of these believe that we arecurrently living in the Holocene that actually began more than eleven thousandyears ago whereas the other believes that we have already entered theAnthropocene.
Observing the impact of our existence, the Anthropocene hasbegun but where to draw the line? Did it begin today when the humans are nearthe epitome of technological innovation or about forty thousand years ago whenour ancestors started killing off mammals and vertebrates? For centuries,mankind considered nature inferior to them little did we know that ourenvironment will force us to adapt in a number of ways else be a vital cause toour extinction. We are living in an interglacial period with hightemperatures and rising sea levels. Mankind is artificially prolonging thisperiod until the next ice age and for this reason it is being called the age ofthe humans. There have been positive outcomes of global warming as well.Due to increased temperatures, masses of ice have now melted making it possibleto grow fruits and vegetables. Greenland can now grow its own food and extracturanium, paving way for foreign investment as a means of improving its economy.Mother nature always maintains balance, new life in this region is causing exterminationin coastal areas drowning them and the hopes of those who inhabit it. Seeing another colour of this beautifully flawed picture, wesee how mother nature is affecting fertility in mothers whether it is a humanbeing or an animal.
Viewing this crisis from a feminist lens and through awoman’s lens, we see that a lot of creatures are having trouble with fertility.The whole world is having a fertility crisis right now. The saddest part isthat leatherback turtles bury their eggs in the sand but due to global warmingthe sand is getting so hot that eggs are cooking. A specie as old as the dinosaursnow has to see the demise of its young ones. This is how extinction occurs. Barlett gives the example of a beaker. With a singlebacterium in it, the one that divides and doubles every minute. If you placethe first bacterium into the beaker at eleven o’clock and it is completely fullby twelve, at what time is the beaker still only half full? It is at eleven fifty-nine.
That’s what time it is for us. In forty years, we will be fighting for ourrights and we will fail for this is time mankind will not be able to find asolution and adapt. Our numbers are increasing exponentially. The earth’spopulation took about a hundred thousand years to reach a billion and today weare nearly at eight billion. Feeding this number is not easy and because ofthis, we have started perfecting nature. Today, mankind has fast forwarded timegrowing crops vegetables in about three weeks.
Scientists are finding ways toeradicate diseases that destroy crops. Work is being done to strengthen plantimmunity to help them fight against infestation. It is interesting to note thatthere exists a “Global Seed Vault” high up in the north of Norway. The seedvault represents the world’s largest collection of crop diversity. Itis an attempt to ensure against the loss of seeds in other genebanks duringlarge-scale regional or globalcrises.
Mankind seems to be prepared to anextent as it has a vague idea of what lies ahead yet it is not takingconsiderate measures to save this planet from the dark days that lie ahead. In thisera, we are striving to find something. It is like setting sail and finding anew continent but will we be able to find land or will the vastness of theocean consume us and be the end of our kind? We tend to protect what we love.Perhaps our love for this planet and our kind is not enough to get us to ourfeet and come together as one for saving them.