For those who are not (yet) heartless cynics or emotionless Ayn Rand acolytes, the now-famous photographs of sludge-soaked pelicans on the Gulf Coast are painful to behold. It’s those hollow pupils peeking out of the brown death, screaming in silence. They are an avian version of the eyes of T.J. Eckleburg that F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote about—and they implicate us all.
As President Barack Obama correctly stated: “Easily accessible oil has already been sucked up out of the ground”—and drilling companies must now use ever-riskier techniques to find the oil we demand. While British Petroleum and federal regulators are certainly at fault for their reckless behavior, every American who uses oil—which is to say every American—is incriminated in this ecological holocaust.
This does not necessarily mean radical lifestyle changes—good news for those who remain locked into various forms of oil use. Millions, for instance, must drive or fly to workplaces where no alternative transportation exists. And most of us don’t have the cash to trade in our cars for Priuses, and don’t have the option of telecommuting.
However, almost everyone regardless of income or employment can take steps that are so absurdly simple and cost-effective that there’s simply no excuse not to.
Read the rest at Putting the ‘I’ in Environment – CommonDreams.org