Are we past the tipping point?

23 Apr


What is the tipping point  you may well ask? The tipping point is the point at which 50% of the world’s ecosystems have been interfered with. Research published by Anthony D Bannosky et al, University of California in 2012, says that in that year the figure was 43%. So yes, with the way exploitation of the Earth has escalated it is likely that we are now beyond the 50% point.


To me that is a rather shocking thing. What does it really mean though? Are we on the road to doom and destruction?  The Earth is a powerful living entity, not solely for the benefit of the humans being allowed to live there. It is for all the living creatures. Each have full entitlement to live peacefully and breathe clean fresh air. Perhaps even that very air is under threat. So many trees being felled on the Planet right now. Even here in Ireland the Government is debating whether or not to sell off our publicly owned forests.


Such a crazy idea! Humans and  Trees share an important resource…oxygen. Now I know that trees aren’t the only source of oxygen on our Planet but they do create a huge amount of it. Opinions differ as to exactly how much. It’s simple….Trees breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. Humans breathe out carbon dioxide and breathe in oxygen. Seems pretty fatal for the human race then to be cutting Trees at a time when the Planet’s population is growing rapidly.

Birr Castle 019

Water is another resource that is being abused on our Planet. Hydraulic fracturing is seen as the saviour of our fuel shortage situation. However fracking  as well as rupturing the Earth in the search for gas uses vast amounts of water. This water is made toxic by chemicals used in the process as well as naturally occuring chemicals from the Earth. Water is not a renewable resource….All the water that will ever be is already on our Planet. Should be a no brainer that we protect and cherish it.

Birr Castle 014

However it seems that corporations are now more powerful than our governments…and to them profit is the only endgame. It is a well known truth that there are now more lobbyists than politicians in Washington. I’m sure it is similar here in Ireland now.


So what are we to do? Are we to flow along helplessly on this tide of greed and exploitation? No!! We have the power to make a difference. We need to become passionate about our Earth. Stand up against what you believe to be wrong. No, you don’t have to go on the streets protesting. We each need to start in our own homes and gardens/farms/balconies/ growbags. Whatever we can each do may seem very little but if we all work together we can surely turn the tide. Grow what you can in whatever space you have. If you must buy everything try and buy organic, go to independent shops instead of corporation owned supermarkets. Use your money as a weapon. It’s what the corporations understand. That’s the only hurt they feel…the financial kind.  Don’t let shopping be your pastime, even here in Ireland now the shopping centres thrive at the expense of independent retailers. Let Nature be your recreation. Go to the Woods, the fields, the allottments, the parks. It’s healthier than the malls… cheaper too. We need Nature, Nature needs us. Lets get to know her…love her…defend her…before we are tipped into the abyss of no return.

18 Responses to “Are we past the tipping point?”

  1. Jane April 23, 2013 at 8:16 pm #

    A fabulous post Bridget!
    Jane x

  2. islandthreads April 23, 2013 at 8:22 pm #

    well said Bridget, so many people seem to go around with their eyes and ears closed, I do hope your goverment changes it’s mind about your forests, Frances

  3. KL April 23, 2013 at 9:21 pm #

    I am absolutely sure that we are much beyond the tipping point and in worst situation. Look at the weather around UK/Ireland/Europe for the last couple of years; we don’t even have to look farther, just can tell by studying local weather that we are in grave situation. How many climate/nature activist, environmentalist do you meet all the time in your life? I am pretty sure you meet far less and you meet more people who are busy with their lives, changing cell-phone every session, partying, using chemicals in garden/lawn/inside home, eating meat/other food from large-scale groceries and so on. At least that’s the situation here around me :-(.

    • bridget April 25, 2013 at 8:43 am #

      Sadly that’s mostly the case here in Ireland too. Mostly people don’t want to think about anything that may upset their little applecart. There will only be change when they can’t put food on their table, then they start to think.

  4. chebandbecky April 23, 2013 at 10:28 pm #

    Strangely, many cities in North America are monitoring, and increasing, their canopy coverage i.e.trees. In neighboring Toronto, you have to plant at least three trees every time you take one down. There’s tree by-laws, enforcement officers, and permits. Serious stuff!

    • bridget April 25, 2013 at 8:40 am #

      That’s heartening to hear. Long may it continue.

  5. Sarah April 23, 2013 at 10:33 pm #

    The trouble with a tipping point is that once you pass it, there’s no going back… But on a more positive note – the UK government wanted to sell off the publicly owned woodlands, but had to back down under public pressure – don’t give up.

    • bridget April 25, 2013 at 8:39 am #

      Sadly there has’nt yet been a huge amount of public outcry here. Ostrich syndrome!

  6. Anne Wilson April 23, 2013 at 11:58 pm #

    Lovely post Bridget.

  7. Charlie@Seattle Trekker April 24, 2013 at 4:54 am #

    Indeed, a lot to think about.

  8. cindyricksgers April 24, 2013 at 1:36 pm #

    A wonderful, passionate and necessary post, Bridget. Thank you!

  9. Mizz Winkens April 24, 2013 at 2:43 pm #

    Sadly Bridget some people choose to ignore these depressing facts. But I am heartened that many do sit up and see what’s happening around us. It is important to remain aware but positive. You are are so right: if we all change what we can in our own lives to coexist on this earth responsibly and to supporting others in our community that do so then it has to make a difference!

    • bridget April 25, 2013 at 8:38 am #

      Little by little we must fight this uphill battle and try and bring local people back to owning their own communities.

  10. My Education of a Gardener April 24, 2013 at 4:13 pm #

    Well said, Bridget. Most people don’t give a damn about anything as long as they have TV and alcohol. And history makes it evident that foresight is not mankind’s strong point–countless civilizations have collapsed due to a reckless disregard for resource management (think Easter Island). What to do? We can only avoid contributing to the madness pointing to our inevitable downfall, and gardening is a perfect gesture. Best wishes to you.

  11. JoannaJoanna April 24, 2013 at 9:56 pm #

    Gardening is a political act, and a form of protest, and I read your post at just the right moment to remind me why I am passionate about gardening and organics. Thank you for your message!

  12. Leigh April 24, 2013 at 11:53 pm #

    Well said. We certainly can’t rely on government and politicians to help. It all boils down to each of us doing what we ought, and setting an example for others to follow.

  13. under the linden tree April 28, 2013 at 6:11 pm #

    Hello Bridget, I like your blog very much. Reading your last posts I think that maybe you would be interested in our network, which we have just created over Winter. Its called The Sanctuary Network – World as Sactuary The idea of this network is to unite people and work together to heal Earth and humanity, bringing us together to care for environment, promotimg ecological awerness. We would be very happy, if you could have a look and join us. You could there as well publish a blog, photos, use chat, forum etc. Best Regards, Ola

  14. charlieeasterfield April 23, 2015 at 1:41 pm #

    Great post, as ever, Bridget! x

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