A friend in her 90’s told me of former BP CEO Sir John Browne’s book, Seven Elements That Changed the World. Those elements are: *Iron *Carbon *Gold *Silver *Uranium *Titanium *Silicon (found in Earth’s crust)
Having read the latest publication of Climate Assessment Report that warns humankind of a warming, rising ocean due to billions of tons of carbon dioxide pumped into Earth’s atmosphere, I phoned a retired science teacher with one simple question: “What is the most dangerous element for our future?” Without hesitation he replied – “Carbon.” I thought Uranium in our Mutual Assured Destruction (MAD) Atomic age might be the leading candidate. A fading degree of memory still places images of devastated Hiroshima before global consciousness and world leaders who strive to back away from a nuclear abyss.
It is known there are thousands of country destroying weapons in our stockpiles. What remains hidden from our consciousness is the top ten nations burning fossil fuels that emit Earth-threatening carbon dioxide. Only six nations (of 195) send out more carbon dioxide than the state of Texas. China may be more of a threat than the US in the CO(2) race, followed by Russia, Japan, India, Germany, Britain, Canada, Italy, South Korea. Christopher Hayes (THE NATION, May 12) wrote of a “New Abolitionism” to avert planetary disaster in which fossil fuel companies must be forced to part with trillions of wealth. Our only precedent was a national resolve to abolish slavery. Hedges cites Columbia University historian Eric Foner who pointed out: “In 1860, slaves as property were worth more than all the banks, factories and railroads in the country put together.” The NBA and one professional basketball team owner were humbled by racist comments linked to enslavement.
No country can continue by enslaving children or other ethnic groups. Nor can Earth continue with our addiction to fossil fuels. Carbon is essential to life. Have we reached the point in history when our addiction to fossil fuels will bring about a major abolition as we transition to sane, endless energy sources so that life on Earth might continue?