The future could be disastrous

Bakir Oweida

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The year 2050 might look far away these days, but in fact it is at the door of the future, which is closer than many could imagine… and what a future. It was a pure coincidence that the first week of the release of Biblical epic “Noah” in movie theatres in conjunction with the release of a report enumerating the great dangers awaiting mankind in the three next decades because of global warming.

The flood of the prophet Noah (PBUH), is one of many stories in the books of divine religions to showcase the anger of God Almighty over the disobedience of his creatures to the right teaching brought to all mankind by the prophets.

The New Zealander actor Russell Crowe and the British Actor Emma Watson play the leading role in an epic fantasy film directed by the American Director Darren Aronofsky, about one people of many who lived hundreds of centuries before us, and they sabotaged and destroyed the earth, instead of building it, without understanding the consequences of men’s sabotage of the natural balance, something that every wise person knows by instinct, differentiating between the behaviors of individuals and groups, between the good that builds and the evil that destroys.

Same science

In spite of what the offspring of Adam and Eve have achieved in terms of scientific progress that opened to them horizons beyond their own expectations, be it on the land, in space or in the deepest of the seas, oceans and rivers, scientific research, according to a report prepared by scores of researchers from many countries, tells the inhabitants of this planet what awaits them in terms of wars and disasters as a result of the escalating rise in the Earth’s temperature, one of the consequences of the squandering the usage of modern life’s useful tools.

I wonder, in 36 years, where will these fighting powers be to gather the crops of their wars, which mean nothing to anybody else, on the account of the future of innocent people?

Bakir Oweida

One of the alarming factors in this report is that the inhabitants of cities who lack potable water will increase from 50 million today to around one billion by 2050, which means that water wars might erupt, not only between countries, but even between the inhabitants of the same country, and that because of the decline in agricultural crops, including corn, wheat and rice, by 25%, the report warns that an additional number of 25 million children less than 5 years of age will be added to the scores of children suffering from malnutrition.

The report predicts that fatal diseases, such as Cholera and Malaria, supposedly contained by science, are likely to spread in poor countries.

Increased gap

The increase of the gap between the rich and the poor, at the levels of countries as well as individuals within the same community, is an expected consequence of most of these changes, and the anticipated result – which one can imagine, even if it wasn’t in the report – is the increase of social tension and the resulting violent clashes, even in wealthy countries.

Is it strange if researchers and analysts, of the weight of those who put out this report, speak out loud, based on more than 12 thousand scientific studies, warning people everywhere that the increase of the continuous rise in temperature “threatens our health, our homes, our food and our security”?

No, even Rajendra Kumar Pachaur, the chairperson of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and head of the government experts panel said during his press conference (last Monday) that nobody is immune from the upcoming danger.

Of course, the industrialized countries bear the biggest part of responsibility of the increase of heat-trapping gases, such as carbon dioxide. China tops the list, followed by the U.S. and India, so they are the ones who are supposed to be the first in taking efficient initiatives to face the danger that’s putting humankind in peril, but they are still doing much less than they should.

Attributed disasters

This warning from the upcoming conflicts and attributed disasters is sent out loudly, while civil wars are expanding in many regions of the world, especially in the heart of the Old World, the source of the first civilizations in history, the birthplace of divine religions, in whose name all the bloodshed and killings are taking place, in a manner that is beyond any logic.

I wonder, in 36 years, where will these fighting powers be to gather the crops of their wars, which mean nothing to anybody else, on the account of the future of innocent people? Will similar groups access power to control the destiny of the poor, hungry and homeless people, because of the acts of those who ruled them, or as a result of the consequences of the disasters, famine and floods, which might end up having a more devastating impact than the flood of Noah on its people.

This article was first published in Asharq al-Awsat on April 3, 2014.

Bakir Oweida is a journalist who has worked as Managing Editor, and written for several Arab publications based in London. His last executive post was Assistant Editor-in-Chief of Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, responsible for the Opinions section, until December 2003. He can be reached on bakir@hotmail.co.uk and bakir@darbakir.com

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