Thursday, May 17, 2012

Responding backward from another blog.

One Response to Protecting Pele.

  1. kamaainakimo says:

    I’m born and raised here all my life, lived on both the west and east sides of the island, but mostly on the east side where we are closer to the volcanic activity and I have no health problems whatsoever. Maybe being born here gave some kind of immunity to this?


    REPLY: Aloha KK


    I like to think that having Aloha in your heart makes you healthy.  I don't really believe it's that simple, but it makes me feel good to think it.


    If you breathe exhaust fumes from an automobile engine you will die from Carbon Monoxide poisoning. Inhaling volcanic gases anywhere on earth, including in Yellowstone National park can affect you. Inhaling the results of incomplete combustion…smoking, for instance…tobacco or anything else will eventually have an effect as well.


    I really didn’t want to stir all the shit I apparently have, but there are some facts of life at play here. The first is that as fossil fuel gets more and more expensive, we must either use the natural resources we have available, or go without energy. By insisting on a eight or ten mile safety radius around the new plants – which are going in regardless, the opponents have diffused their own case by quantifying that only a certain area MIGHT become hazardous temporarily…during which time the residents could evacuate to a maximum of five miles from the center. The road around the Volcanos observatory is closed periodically due to toxic emissions. No one demands that the observatory be closed. Not because toxic gases aren’t being released within a few yards from that site – but because it’s a stupid idea. I have a full-face respirator that will filter the toxicity out while I leave. If it doesn’t, I have a mini-SCUBA tank (which is called a bail-out bottle) and an oxygen tank that I could breathe from. Anyone with an oxy-acetylene torch could breathe from the oxygen hose for many hours if the tank were filled.


    It bothers me that people would rather argue about things that they can’t change instead of trying to find solutions that would benefit all of us. We could own our own destiny.  If WE, as the residents of the Big Island were being fairly represented by each other and our local government, we would pull together to make the entire geothermal project uniquely ours as a co-op. Everyone would have jobs, everyone would be attentive to doing it right because we live here, and our electricity would be almost free. It would be no problem at all to establish a safety zone and an evacuation corridor. The corridor exists now. Railroad Avenue.


    If we were just a LITTLE smarter, we would start cutting down albizia trees and mulching them as fast as we could. That would not only tent to remove an invasive species, but it would provide all the nitrogen-rich mulch anyone would need to start farming anywhere.


    If we were just a LITTLE smarter than THAT, we’d rebuild the railroad. The right-of-way is still in. It would have to be widened to allow for two sets of tracks, but we could have passengers and cargo moving all day and all night, almost right to everyone’s door, for a tiny fraction of the money we spend paving roads…then tearing them up….then paving them again…then tearing….but you get the picture. When gas is $10 a gallon or more, good luck trying to pay your utility bills and go to Costco.. It’s coming. When it happens, THEN people will say “Oh, why didn’t we plan a little ahead and rebuild our rail system?” And the answer is: Because no one around here is that smart.


    Aloha means all the time, to everyone, from everyone. It doesn’t mean “I’ll be your friend as long as you agree with me.” Or maybe it does, because I sure as hell don’t have any friends left. An island society is a special sort of thing. We can all obsess about our own problems and blame everyone else for them – or we can do the only natural thing there is to do on an island. Work together for everyone’s betterment, not just our own. Or we can be like the inhabitants of Easter Island. When they cut down the last palm tree, I wonder what they were thinking? Because about then they all starved to death.


    We have plenty of everything we need RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW to thrive and survive. We don’t even need money. We can trade and barter very easily. But we can’t seem to do it. I can. I’ll just have to do it by myself. Lately that has been looking like the best possible option.

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