By Bamidele Oni
An unusual year
2020, will ever remain a significant year in our contemporary history. A year that saw the whole world forced to an abrupt stop by the hand of a virus, and business-as-usual became almost totally impossible.
The busy streets do not have to wait till midnight to get empty in the last 3 months, even as all day long silence has become the new norm and staying indoors seems agreeable even to the most petulant person.
Looking at the situation from another perspective, while the human part of Earth’s ecosystem is held back on a compulsory break, the planet seems to be taking advantage of the situation to display its true nature in the face of mankind’s trying time.
There are many reports from all over the world showing the difference between a humanly controlled world and a-nature propelled world. The difference is well proven from facts and sights from everywhere in the world.
A piece of possible non-negligible evidence could be seen in the clear blue-sky void of polluting substances, most especially in the heavily polluted parts of the world; even images from outer-space show a level of clarity that has not been seen in a long time.
Considering the impact of the pandemic and the inferences gathered from available information, the current norm might yet prevail for a while and the certainty of the duration is practically open-ended.
So, while our factory yards are resting and humans are abiding by the rules of the restriction laws, we are witnessing the impossible things that were thought never imaginable in this generation.
Now, humans are forced to take a compulsory rest, and for the first time in a long time, there has been a record of a lighter global ecological footprint. This feat might be the most unusual and perhaps a good glimpse into the realms of wishes or maybe future possibilities.
The opportunity cost of having to cancel conferences, flights, and many other related activities provided our planet the benefits of a short-term rest, and such made us see the beauty of our planet that has been hidden in the dark clouds of our unending exploitations.
The planet smiles and finally, it breathes, and its breath brings healing
Possibly, the pandemic will cause an awakening to the fact that the power nature wields is far superior. Even though it seems we can use and manipulate its vast resources to our immediate advantage, there is one certainty, it will only last for a defined time, nature will outlive humans.
This time could be well managed to re-teach ourselves the basics of our relationship with nature, the space we occupy; our roles which translate into our actions. Also, Perhaps, this period could serve as an eye-opener to the fact that we could do without certain things and our needs could be well managed within the idea of minimalism.
Denying the need to co-exist in mutual understanding with nature will only bring us more woes and unending possibilities of catastrophic events.
However, if businesses as usual is still nearly impossible for the most part of the year, it just might be that this year’s conference of parties on climate change would be held online, just like most meetings have gone online. The future might just be around the corner but the magnitude and the extent, we do not know.
It is however not the end of the world and the impact of the pandemic will eventually give way. Also, if we eventually find a way out of this situation, one question will however hang in the balance, would we go back to business as usual? Or would this be the beginning of a new era?