Screwing up the dream
Biodiesel, what a great idea it was. I was involved with the biodiesel industry for several years. When I was involved we looked at the product as an awesome opportunity to make the world a better place. My company worked on innovative technology with the goal of helping small-scale producers become more independent. By small scale we had been working with rural communities and small heating oil companies.
How great is the idea that farmers can grow enough crops to create the bulk of their own fuel as well as be able to farm for profit. How great an idea for heating oil companies to be able to take waste product from local restaurants and turn it into a fuel that was produced right where it was used. We thought it would be great, and others did as well.
Then entered greed, followed by economists and beaurocrats and major corporations. That is when the dream became a nightmare.
Now instead of a sustainable fuel used on a small scale to create positive change we literally have countries burning off all their indigenous forest, realizing centuries worth of the hydrocarbons we are trying to contain, and virtually turning themselves into a monoculture of palm oil plantations. It boggles my mind when I see things like this.
Westerners have this idea that if we get everyone in the world on board with our “free market” they will become more prosperous. And in some cases they have, however more often what happens is cultures are destroyed. Farming for local subsistence is ignored so that rather than growing food for ourselves we are growing a commodity for the market, that we sell, and then go buy the food we want. Does not sound bad, unless the market takes a hit and you have to sell lower than you planned so you cant make enough money to buy what you need. Crazy.
In our rush to build one-world economies we forget the simple rules of nature. The more biodiversity an area is the healthier it tends to be. As we look at everything that comes from our labor and resources as only measured in cash we lose so much of who we are, and more importantly whom we can be.
Rather than trying to pound everyone into the pegs we want why don’t we learn to work with cultures, and peoples, and, dare I say it, nature to create a more sustainable world that benefits all. Based first on the needs of the local, then extra goes to market. Feeding the market first is not working globally. We need a new way to look at the world, we need a twenty-cent change, and you know a paradigm shift.