I have always wanted to blog, and have been toying with the idea of this one for about three years. I enjoy writing, use of language and (I might be biased here) but I think I’m pretty good at it. As a teenager I flip-flopped between science and journalism and even declared at an early age that I wanted to write for National Geographic. However, I never really fully committed to anything enough to be willing to contribute endless hours typing, let alone edit a webpage and self-publish on the internet.
That was until I sat last week watching the Prime Minister talk about the twenty five year plan to improve the environment in Great Britain, and I felt all of the things. I was sceptical. I was angry. I was excited. I had all these ideas. And that’s when it hit me, I have so much to say about the environment, conservation, wildlife, and everything in between but didn’t (yet) have an outlet to say it.
Sure, I talk to my friends and family, I use social media (but with much of my work being in education, my personal accounts are kept private). While I still post to Facebook, Instagram etc., and I’m sure some of my 143 friends and mere 35 followers find my posts interesting and informative, I’m pretty sure most of them think I’m some kind of hippy-dippy tree-hugger and they’d much rather see cute pictures of my dog.
I studied the environment and work in the sector, but sometimes it’s hard to make a point coherently, know who you are aiming at, and of course express a personal opinion when you need to be professional. So while watching the PM last week, I remembered something I first heard in a lecture
a few many years ago by Professor Brian Moss (of Ecology of Fresh Waters fame). If I remember rightly Prof Moss was talking about inspirational people and ideas in ecology, and I was particularly struck by this one quote…
“We shall never achieve harmony with land, any more than we shall achieve absolute justice or liberty for people. In these higher aspirations the important thing is not to achieve, but to strive”
Penned by hunter-turned-environmentalist, and the father of wildlife management, Aldo Leopold, in A Sand County Almanac and Sketches Here and There, the quote at first (in my naivety) caught me off guard, I thought it was negative, and sad. But its not either of those things, what it is is realistic… as a species we are always going to have an impact, it’s about realising that fact and ensuring we do everything in our power to minimise it.
Now that’s important.
Still while writing this, I think who is going to care what I have to say? How can I really make that much of a difference? Will anyone even read this blog? But then I remember that if we all thought like that then nothing would ever change.
So here I am giving it a go and like many before me, striving to be a better environmentalist.