This blue planet holds so many extraordinary things in where the beauty is relished by all living creatures. Humans are one species that enjoy it a lot. On the other hand, it is also their paradox that destructively ignores it. In Indonesia, for example, the data released by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry, forest and land fires in 2019 covered an area of 1,649,258 hectares or almost the size of the city of Magelang, Central Java. Next, forest and land fires covering an area of 296,942 hectares occurred in 2020. Even though there was a decline, these fires were suffocating enough to take us out of breath because of the smoke. In addition, there were some other natural damages caused by human activities such as floods, landslides, pollution of river, sea, air, and others. If we take a look at the National Agency for Disaster Countermeasure (BNPB) data on the occurrence of natural disasters in Indonesia in 2021, there were significantly 3,058 disasters, which were dominated by floods and extreme weather.
we can imagine the impact of the damages both in the material and nature itself in the series of disasters above. What is interesting about figure 1 above is the increase in extreme weather events which signal to humans that the biggest impact of climate change must be seriously addressed because so far flood disaster has just always been a single priority. The impact of energy and climate change is the El-Nino, which is a prolonged drought as a derivative of rising temperatures, resulting in very significant seasonal changes. Other obvious impacts are land conditions that affect agricultural productivity, the damage of ecosystems, ecology, and the availability of water resources both above and below the surface. Such phenomenon is the effect of accumulative global warming.
“Gloomy skies, stifling air, cloudy seas,
porous soil, and the no longer green leaves ……. “
The fragment above is not just a scary fantasy, but it is starting to be felt now. It does not mean to frighten or exaggerate, and this is not a science fiction film. If scientific data is explained, then we will be flabbergasted. Will it be able to awaken us to love the earth?
Earth is a place to live, a home, and a paradise for all living things. If we always take good care of our house, then we should be more aware of the Earth and the environment. A comfortable environment is not only able to meet the needs of today’s life by trying to beautify its outer appearance, but we also have to look at its sustainability aspect.
It is interesting what Carl Sagan said, Pale Blue dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space, which is about the pale blue dot he saw from the image sent by the Voyager I spacecraft when he saw the earth from a distance of 6 billion km.
“The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena” and “all of human history has happened on that tiny pixel,” shown here inside a blue circle, “which is our only home” (speech at Cornell University, October 13, 1994).
Seen from outer space, the earth is just a small dot but so special to the living creatures on it because everyone we love, everyone who has ever been born into the world lives here, on earth. Every explorer, every hero and coward, every builder and destroyer of civilization, every king and his people, every hopeful mother and father and son, every teacher who teaches morals, every corrupting politician, every saint and sinner all live there, over that speck of dust.
So, the lesson we can take is to care for and love this earth as we take care of our children and grandchildren. Earth is the birthplace of love and also the birthplace of pride. It is unnecessary to compete for dominating the whole earth. We need to be aware that the earth is just a tiny dot in the immensity of the universe. We must do something so that the Earth remains sustainable.
- Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space, 1997 reprint, hal. xv–xvi
- Wacana, Petrasa. 2014. Bencana Ekologi Sebagai Dampak Perubahan Iklim Global dan Upaya Peredaman Risiko Bencana, BPBD. Diakses pada https://bpbd.bulelengkab.go.id/informasi/detail/artikel/bencana-ekologi-sebagai-dampak-perubahan-iklim-global-dan-upaya-peredaman-risiko-bencana-1#:~:text=Perubahan%20iklim%20yang%20terjadi%20akibat,endemic%2C%20tsunami%2C%20kekeringan%20dan%20El
- Azkiya Dihni, Vika. 2021. BNPB: Kejadian Bencana Alam Indonesia Capai 3.058 Sepanjang 2021. Databoks. Diakses pada https://databoks.katadata.co.id/datapublish/2021/12/29/bnpb-kejadian-bencana-alam-indonesia-capai-3058-sepanjang-2021