The sky’s the limit – have we already reached it?
There’s an odd sort of haze on the meadow, there’s an odd sort of haze on the meadow. Yes, the corn is as high as an elephant’s eye…An’ it’s growing straight up to a treacherous sky…
While we offer apologies to Rogers and Hammerstein for this bastardized version of their lovely “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning” from Oklahoma!, we couldn’t help but have that particular tune go through our head as we gazed at the skies over Uxbridge this past weekend. The haze we’ve been seeing is courtesy of over 100 forest fires that are currently burning in northwestern Ontario. The smoky haze makes the sun watery and thin looking, yet it’s giving off perfect summertime heat. That heat, mixed with the copious quantities of rain that have come down lately, makes the corn grow nice and tall in the fields.
It’s difficult to deny, however, that the sky is treacherous. It’s yielding some pretty impressive displays, lately. Lightening storms, tornados, billowy white clouds – the show is varied and hugely entertaining. And more than a little bit scary. We’re getting weather watches or warnings almost daily, weather-caused wildfires burn across the country, and record-setting temperatures have been recorded on the west coast.
Climate change denial is no longer an option.
The federal government recently released a report entitled “Canada in a Changing Climate.” In its introduction, the report comments that “the experience of the past year [re: COVID-19] has also demonstrated the advantages that can be realized through cooperation, the progress that can be achieved through aligned efforts, and the critical role that the private sector and civil society play in responding to global challenges.” In other words, the pandemic showed us that we can make the changes necessary to set the planet right.
But it also says that “the research demonstrates that the window for taking action to reduce increasingly severe impacts is rapidly closing. Urgent action is needed to both reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to increase resilience to climate change through adaptation.”
We know what needs to be done, but we need to get off our duffs and do it. We quite literally can’t afford more tornados or fires wiping out entire towns. COVID-19 has proved that we are more than capable of adapting.
Our weather is going to get more and more weird if we don’t change our sorry ways now. Because if we don’t smarten up, it’s going to more than just that nice tall corn that gets roasted.