Will we ever wake up from the illusion of our species’ superiority? Will we ever see the big picture instead of pleasing our insatiable greed and chasing short-time materialistic goals? Our planet is plagued by wildfires. Huge areas in California, Siberia, and Southern Europe from Italy to Turkey are left to the mercy of this devastating natural force. Looks like the earth is determined to get itself rid of the parasites – humans. Or is it just a wake-up call for us? Greece is among the countries that have endured the most catastrophic wildfires.
The locals call it a “biblical catastrophe“. It is estimated that there are over 100 active wildfires happening in the country right now.
The authorities say that extreme heat is the most likely culprit of the natural disaster. Indeed, in Athens, Greece, the temperature reached 113 degrees Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius) over the last week. Heat = wildfires. Makes sense, right? But let’s not jump to conclusions yet. Instead of shifting the blame onto global warming, let’s explore it further.
The area that is the most plagued by uncontrolled wildfires is the island of Euboea (Evia). Its northern part is covered in dense forests. It also has untouched beaches and clear waters, which attracts thousands of tourists from Greece and other countries every summer. This is how the area looked back in 2019: Now, let’s look at the website of Greece’s Regulatory Authority for Energy. It contains three interesting documents: It turns out that back in June 2021, the Greek government issued permission for the installation of wind-energy generation facilities in the very area that is now hit by wildfires! License granted for the electricity production from the wind 34 MW power plant, at the location “BARDAKOS SOULINO”, of Municipal Unit of KIREOS, of the Municipality of Mantoudi – Limni -Agia Anna, of the Regional Unit of Euboea. Let’s explore another document obtained from diavgeia.gov.gr, the website aimed to promote government transparency. It’s a report from the meeting of Euboea’s municipal authorities that took place on July 21, 2021. (As a matter of fact, I had a hard time finding the report as it seems to be removed from all lists, but the file still exists on the website) According to the report, the local authorities disagree to place wind turbines in the area.
The city council expresses its complete opposition and disagreement over the three (3) permits 504, 506, and 507 for wind energy facilities in the Municipality of Mantoudi-Limni-Agia Anna. Two weeks later, the catastrophic wildfire starts on Euboea, hitting these very areas... I don’t know about you, but I don’t believe in coincidences. As Greek prime minister, Kyriakos Mitsotakis, said, “We had no loss of human life. ... Homes will be rebuilt and over time the forest will grow back.” Indeed, there was no loss of human life, but there was a loss of trees, animals, and ecosystems.
The island of Euboea will never be the same. Immense areas of land are destroyed, and it will take decades to restore the forests. (Even though it seems that restoring them is not a part of the plan) Will humans ever realize that the Earth is our only home, along with being home to countless other species except for our own? Will we ever stop valuing money over life? Only when the last tree has been cut down, the last fish been caught, and the last stream poisoned, will we realize we cannot eat money. -Cree Indian Prophecy.
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