Welcome to this new decade! What will Earth be like when my darling grandchildren (now 3 and 3 months old) turn 80? Will the next century arrive safely?
Gazing at Earth from space must be a surreal and magnificent experience. How excited I become glimpsing the Atlantic from a plane descending over Boston Harbor, seeing other-worldly glaciers in Anchorage, or flying above the snow-covered Caucasus Mountains.
I worry about the next decade, the one after that, and the one after that. On NPR recently I listened to an interview with Carl Sagan, the renowned American astronomer who told us more than twenty years ago:
“In our obscurity – in all this vastness – there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. It is up to us.” — Carl Sagan
More than twenty years ago I asked my Maine high school students, “Do you know how lucky we are to have been born on this patch of land we call the United States?” I don’t recall anyone responding.
We’ve been taking our clean water, our familiar weather patterns, our beautiful planet for granted for a very long time. Our one and only Big Blue Marble.
May 2020 inaugurate a decade when we reinstate science, fight off climate change, and upgrade civility among the planet’s humans.
For all our children and grandchildren. For the Earth itself.
Our one and only Big Blue Marble. I hope it survives.