Who could forget Leonardo Di Caprio’s Oscar acceptance speech last year?
He waited all these years to receive the recognition that he rightly deserved, and he used his speech time to warn viewers about the dangers of Global Warming.
Now I admit, when he did that, I felt a little bit disappointed. I thought ‘whyyyy would you use your time, that you’ve waited so long for, to preach?’ I found it a little bit embarrassing.
I don’t anymore.
Last night I watched ‘Before the Flood’.
‘Before the Flood‘ is a documentary that Leonardo Di Caprio and a camera team spent 2 years filming, to bring awareness to the dire situation that our planet is in due to fossil fuel consumption.
I have always been afraid of ‘the end of the world’ prophecies since my Year 6 teacher taught us about the Aztecs and their prophecy, that the world would end in 2012.
2012?! But that’s so soon! (My 11 year old self panicked.) If the world is going to end in 2012, then that means I’ll only live to be 20 years old! I have so much I want to do, and so little time…
As a result of that history lesson, I developed an irrational fear of the year 2012. I was convinced it may be my last.
I have always been fascinated by prophecies of the end of the world, including becoming an avid reader of ‘The Book of Revelations’ in my bible. The prophecies from every source seemed to lead to the same conclusion; extreme weather would destroy our planet, the way we know it.
All the apocalyptic films, such as The Day After Tomorrow, didn’t help my fears either.
My fear of water and the sea all boils down to the fact that I am petrified of tsunamis. I have never learnt to swim as I am terrified of the water; I can’t even dunk my head under the water at a swimming pool. In the back of my mind, from a young age, I have always irrationally felt like water would be the cause of my demise.
It’s a good job I don’t work on a cruise ship, right? (Insert nervous laughter here…)
So as you can imagine, when December 21st, 2012 came around, I spent about 48 hours in a heightened state of anxiety. I couldn’t sleep the night before, and I spent the whole of our first day of our family trip to Edinburgh looking around for a tsunami wave to come tumbling over the city buildings. I didn’t feel safe until about half way through the 22nd, as then it probably wasn’t the 21st anywhere else on the planet by that point.
From that moment on I felt a fresh zest for life. I wasn’t going to die at 20 years old! The prophecy wasn’t true and we are still here to this day. Yippee!
The threat of tsunamis got pushed to the back of my mind, and I have happily plodded through life since, enjoying the amazing world that I get to live in. I have done some travelling, and have so much more that I want to see. Every day I am grateful for my life and marvel in the beauty of our world.
But every now and then, it hits home how limited my time is to experience all the things I’d love to.
Why is that? Because one day the Arctic ice won’t be there, species such as rhinos and elephants will have died out, the Amazon rainforest will be all cut down; we’ll be left with a barren, toxic planet that we created.
I don’t want to live in a world without elephants.
‘Before the Flood’ highlighted all of the things that I used to be aware of and afraid of when I was younger, but pushed to the back of my mind as I got older. You think it won’t happen during your life time, but actually, it very likely will happen within my lifetime; in the next several decades to be exact! We can no longer bury our heads in the sand when there is so much at stake, and we only have a tiny window of opportunity to make a change now.
Our planet is heating, our ice caps are melting at a rapid rate, and that will lead to the sea taking back the land.
Did you know Miami is sinking? Well I didn’t! I’d better make the most of my time in Miami this year, because who knows if it will be there in a few decades…
There are so many factors that contribute to Global Warming, but the main factors are Fossil Fuel consumption, eating beef, and, if I’m honest, overpopulation.
Our governments need to start implementing solar and wind power, and ditch ‘cheap’ fossil fuels, and we need to be more conscious of what we are consuming. Do you really need to take your car to drive down the road to your friend’s house?
Change will only start happening once we all start working together. But I guess that’s easier said than done. I mean, would you give up your life of luxury to save our planet for your children and grandchildren, and countless other species?
I know it’s a hard question when you really think about what you’d be giving up, but when you think about what is at stake, it’s not really that hard.
But the first step is awareness.
Please, if you are sitting in bed today doing nothing, watch this film. If you are having a movie night, pick this film. Whenever you have some free time, please watch this film.
Even if you don’t ‘believe’ in Global Warming, you should watch this film to educate yourself and be open to another perspective. And you also need to wake up and realise that Global Warming isn’t something you ‘believe in’. It is happening, and it is happening now.
“You will either be lauded by future generations, or vilified by them. You are the last best hope of earth. We ask you to protect it, or we, and all things we cherish, are history.” – Leonardo Di Caprio, UN Messenger of Peace
Watch ‘Before the Flood’ on YouTube, via the link: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=90CkXVF-Q8M
Also visit the following websites for more information.
It is up to all of us.
Thanks for reading my ramble! 🙂