By: Swati Mishra
The portal to hell has never been more evidently visible. This isn’t your typical post-apocalyptic imagery. It is about an actual ocean engulfed in flames. If we do not take the appropriate steps, we are certainly doomed. We wouldn’t have to wait for an alien intervention to end the world. Earth will turn against itself and become its own greatest enemy. Given the current state of affairs, a dystopian future is not out of the question. Let’s take a look at the gravity of the situation.
The Gulf of Mexico Caught Fire
On the morning of 2nd July, the whole world witnessed the ‘Eye of fire’ on the Gulf of Mexico. Before jumping to any conclusion or theory, it becomes critical to consider the reason. What led to this catastrophe in the middle of an ocean? Was it the environment ruining itself or the constant permutation of human greediness had another collateral damage?
The national oil company has laid underwater pipes for gas and oil. The leaking gas, from the underwater pipeline, rose to the surface and was struck by lightning. So, while the water was not on fire, the gas floating above it was scorching. It took five hours to put off the fire. A natural source of energy is never as flawed as artificial development. Now, the line between ‘development’ and ‘destruction’ is blurring at a high rate.
Surprisingly, this wasn’t the once in a century calamity. It has been a recurring event in the past few years. Although the factors may differ, the core cause is always the same- ceaseless desire to want more, more than we need and more than we deserve. Whether it was the eruption of the cargo, Chevron Nigeria gas well fire, oil spill or the Caspian sea explosion, they have all affected the climate in horrendous ways.
This pattern surely leaves a trail of obvious hints or the zillion warning signs. Humans, being their nonchalant selves, remain mindfully clueless about the whole situation. Instead of being alarmed by the imminent danger, we continue to fulfil our own needs. There is a continual increment in the requirement of petroleum paralleling our progress in various fields. This need surpasses our supplies and gives rise to the exploitation of oceans, the environment and consequently our future.
The concerned authorities always claim that ‘there has been no damage done’, but that isn’t entirely plausible. The water life is severely harmed as a result of these exhausting fires. Flora and fauna in the immediate vicinity of the fire are impacted in the worst way possible. Many rare species step closer to the verge of extinction and subsequently ecological balance is greatly disrupted.
Even if everything else is rescued from the ‘Eye of evil’, the emission of harmful gases still can’t be controlled from polluting the environment. The main component of this pollution is carbon, which facilitates the rapidly rising temperature while also spreading respiratory ailments. It doesn’t help in times like these when global warming is pushing all of its boundaries.
If not this, the fact that fossil fuel pollution cuts three years right out of our lifetime, should be scary enough.
Comforting Light of Hope
It is possible to protect the oceans by taking one easy step: leaving them alone. We’ve been taught to be resourceful, to make the most of what we have. We’ve been raised to be efficient and clever. This does not grant us carte blanche to exploit everything without any regard for future generations.
It is critical for us to turn to alternatives. Electric automobiles can be a major help in reducing the excessive demand for petroleum, as the need for oil and petrol is the optimal reason behind the disruption of the ocean’s solitude. Man-made batteries, in combination with natural sources of power such as wind, solar, hydro, and geothermal, have the potential to save the planet.
We are fortunate enough to have all the premonitions that we are receiving, but the decision to act on them is ours to make. We can stand up for change and even be a part of it. No matter what, we can change the world for the better. These burning oceans ignite the spark of being quick to bring that change.