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  1. Eva
    April 13, 2024 @ 2:51 pm


    It’s interesting how we believe current trends will continue for ever! I was watching a program about the need to build our cities ever upward — higher, higher ever higher sky scrapers because of our (for ever) growing world populations.

    Speaking for Canada we know that our birthrate is so low we would barely replace our numbers naturally! Where’s the threat of an ever increasing population that requires the proliferation of mega high-rises in our major cities?

    There would be no threat, were it not for the Trudeau government’s creating one via a proposed million newcomers every year!

    Given that no one seems to care if we can feed any more people at a decent standard of living, I consider these policies irresponsible! I doubt we can expect manna from heaven, and our main food supplying countries (we are actually no longer food self-sufficient even now) might not be able to spare any of their food, if climate change continues and we don’t do anything sensible to adapt to it.

    A recent BC Knowledge network program on the need for building ever higher and denser was totally distressing to me, and I find the attempts to convince listeners that these future ghost towns are green pretty unconvincing! In fact it almost sounded as if the speaker making this claim was not really convinced either.

    It made me wonder if there wasn’t something missing in that argument. Something like humans being part of wild, living nature not a man made concrete jungle. Putting a few artificial patches of planting here and there is not the same. I would have said God-created nature, but not everyone believes in the supreme Creator any more. That is a shame of course, because then some tend to think they are god, and try to usurp the rights of others.To understand this misunderstanding, everyone needs to find and study “The secret revelation of John”, a document found in the desert of Egypt about 150 years ago!

    But let’s not digress!

    What concerns me, apart from the inhumanity of our current urban planning model, is the lack of forethought given to any and all potential disasters that could make these dense high-rise urban areas literally death traps!

    Just recently some US cities lost all internet and electric power.
    While the outage lasted only a matter of hours, it should be a warning signal. There are a number of causes why this sort of thing could be regional, or even continent wide!

    Let’s just consider the natural ones: solar flares, for example. They increase and decrease periodically, and have been much more severe in several historical periods. In the view of people who actually understand this – unlike me – this could knock out all the energy sources we rely on in our man made civilizations.
    So no power, no heating/cooling, no elevator service, no supply of necessities to our glossy cities. And given that vehicles now require electronic and internet inputs, probably no getting away to a safer area!

    And what about electronic warfare? You could paralyze your adversary without a single shot, by just knocking out their energy capability. Those rockets and drones just wouldn’t fly! Watch reports on the war in Ukraine right now. That’s the way modern warfare is headed! Do we really believe China and Russia are so dumb as not to be working on these types of weapons? Under estimating your adversaries is very dangerous! The US has a great history in doing this — in years of failed wars against even small backward enemies.

    Even without wars, there are more natural disasters that could turn our megacities into death traps. Remember the “Big One” earth quake we are presumably waiting for any day? Vancouver for one is poorly located strategically when it comes to escape routes. There is essentially one main ext along the US border going east, highway 99 going north, and #5 going south. The latter would probably also be impassable in a big earthquake.

    A few years ago highways #1, 5, and 3 going east from Vancouver were all essentially impassable! Heavy rains washed them out.

    Highway 99 north runs along steep mountain sides, and tends to be out due to landslides. My husband and I were caught in Squamish on one such occasion, and a ferry had to be sent for us and all the people from Vancouver stranded in Squamish by a washout slide on Loggers creek.

    Fortunately none of the disasters to date lasted for long enough to turn deadly. Are we sure that will always be so?

    There must be better and more human scale solutions! It seems to me that we are so enamoured with hi tech and AI, that we lose sight of simpler, cheaper and more life friendly solutions.

    Let’s remember that we humans are animals, we are part of the land of the Earth, and were not meant to live in cages!



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