The Lorax on Easter Island

The history of Easter Island civilization is a vivid example of the terrible consequences of human greed and excessive desire to satisfy their immediate needs. Giving praise to their gods, the islanders completely destroyed the palm forests. This great natural disaster led to a chain of destructions of the natural habitats of many birds and other animals that made the main food recourse for the islanders (Renouf, 2003). The example of Easter Island civilization can be viewed as a micro model of modern global society whose mindless consumption of natural resources can eventually lead to the same consequences on the global scale in the future.In The Cartoon Guide to the Environment, Larry Gonick uses the image of Easter Island as a metaphor to illustrate human attitude to the planet. Gonick suggests that humans are the only creatures in the world able to get energy not only from food. Indeed, this ability has led to rapid development of human civilization and put humanity at the top of the chain of consumption. Thanks to this ability, we can now use innumerable technological inventions that make our lives more comfortable. However, Gonick also raises the problem of the natural resources use and the consequences of their disappearance (Gonick and Outwater, 1996). The problem is that in modern pursuit of comfort we do not pay attention to the oblivious fact that the Earth is the home for all of us. If we do not use its resources wisely, we will eventually have the same destiny as that of the inhabitants of Easter Island.The current level of environmental pollution horrifies a lot of environmentalists. What kind of future lies ahead? The atmosphere and the oceans’ water are increasingly polluted by industrial waste and greenhouse gas emissions. At the same time, the current level of deforestation is thousands times greater than that of Easter Island. Striving to meet increasing human demands and make greater profits, modern civilization invents new and new machines that on the one hand make modern world more comfortable for us, but on the other hand lead to gradual destruction of the natural environment.The islanders’ worship to stone gods led to the environmental catastrophe. Modern humanity worships a different sort of gods. These god are represented by a number of symbolic images we all strive for: profit, money, consumption. For the sake of these gods, we can do anything. Similarly to the worship of the islanders, our worship drives us crazy and makes us blind. Another problem is that modern lifestyle based on mindless use of natural recourses is deeply rooted in human minds. As a result, the sphere of environmental protection is associated with a complex ethical problem: an individual needs to moderate their consumption making their life less comfortable, in order to save the planet. It seems that at this stage of its development, humanity is simply unable to refuse at least some of the benefits of the current technological progress. In general, we do not want to change the technology, …
Posted by: Marvel Bialaszewski

Share the joy
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •  
  •