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Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Hardcore problems a worry

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If you think too hard about matters it becomes harder and harder to adhere to the old adage “keep your chin up”.

This week alone there has been enough depressing news to dent the confident of even the most ardent optimist.

For starters we learn most of the world’s wildlife has been wiped out in the last 50 or so years and the rates of extinction are accelerating at an alarming speed.

So much so that within just a few years it is believed many species we hold dear will have all-but completely disappeared, possibly including elephants, orca and salamanders in what wildlife experts are now describing as the greatest wildlife extinction since dinosaurs were wiped out 65 million years ago.

Included in the mix of species in trouble are a great many New Zealand seabirds, including albatross, which are falling victim to the tread of man in troves, many caught in fishing nets and perishing.

It is not just animals but also plant life that is suffering terribly.

Rain forests in places like Indonesia and South America are in constant retreat and vast areas on Africa have been turned into virtually uninhabitable desert as tree cover is sacrificed for agricultural expansion which nearly always fails anyway.

Many years back at a time when speaking out against man’s relentless march towards “progress” was not a popular stance, Greytown doctor Doug Banks went public warning that the dangers of unchecked world population would have impacts that would eventually be man’s undoing.

He charted the likely population increases continent by continent, even country by country, and all these years later has proved to be remarkably accurate, not only in the numbers but also with the problems he said we would encounter.

On a more local level a problem immediately facing New Zealanders is the claim we are in the grip of an ever- worsening methamphetamine addiction with availability of the ruinous drug responsible for wrecking lives now at the stage where it is far easier to obtain than cannabis.

What’s more home buyers have to be on high alert, ensuring the property they have pinned their hopes on purchasing is not meth contaminated as apparently many hundreds, if not thousands, of homes throughout the country are.

Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland
Emily Ireland is Wairarapa’s Local Democracy Reporter, a Public Interest Journalism role funded through NZ On Air. Emily has worked at the Wairarapa Times-Age for seven years and has a keen interest in council decision-making and transparency.

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