Homer Alaska - Letters

Story last updated at 6:35 PM on Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Time to act differently

I became disheartened when I read a recent newspaper poll that showed 71 percent of the 64 respondents would like to see more oil and gas development in Cook Inlet, the promise of more jobs and a healthier economy being the main reason.

I see in Homer a beautiful place to live, with colorful local personas and an abundance of sustainable natural resources. Homer also is a subset of Alaska where almost everyone loves Mother Nature and yet a significant percentage of the population, consciously or unconsciously, abuse her in the name of sport, comfort, business and/or pleasure.

Human lives and interests have, for many, become far more important than the rest of the inhabitants of this planet and of Mother Nature herself. I would caution all who believe that we can keep on drilling, dumping and gouging the planet, and extincting other species, without consequences. Our realm is an interconnected network of life, it is ecosystems within ecosystems and is dependent on all pieces to sustain each other, starting with the planet and moving out.

In fact, the planet does not need us. There is absolutely nothing we can do to this planet that will ultimately affect its many billion years of life. On the other hand, we need the planet to exist, for however long humankind will exist (some experts say we won't make another 100 years). We owe it to ourselves, our children and grandchildren to be good stewards of the earth and harness the sustainable elements to survive while eschewing the non-sustainable and destructive ones.

It's time our politicians reverse the current practice of incentivizing unsustainable, environmentally hostile activity while penalizing renewables with higher market prices and little, or no, incentives.

I am sure future generations will thank us if we do.

Kevin Kreitz