Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Run, River, Run
For thousands of years,
they lived in harmony with the earth,
taking only what they needed,
ensuring most was left,
so future generations might live.
Unto the seventh generation is tribal law:
in the making of all decisions, consideration is given
to the effect on descendants
seven generations in the future.
They have watched with horror
the post-contact extinction, destruction,
devastation, decimation, of wildlife and habitat,
thinking the white man mad for money,
even at the cost of his own
- and all creatures' - survival.
Now, at the brink of planetary systemic collapse,
it is the indigenous people who will show us the way
to live in harmony with the land and all creatures,
maybe even ourselves.
for Susan's prompt at Mid Week Motif: Sustainability. I wrote two horribly depressing poems before discovering, this morning, an item in the local news about a former First Nations Chief, Judith Sayers, of the Hupacasath First Nations, who led her tribe to oppose a natural gas system being developed in Port Alberni, due to concerns about emissions. She looked around for an alternative renewable, clean-energy source of power, and a run-of-river hydro project is now up and running.
"Run-of-river is a relatively simple technology. You divert a part of creek that has a big elevation change into a pipe. You run that pipe downhill to a powerhouse where you spin a turbine with the force of the water and generate electricity." explains Green Energy Futures. The project depends on a good snowmelt, and rainfall. The valley is feeling the effects of global warming, with less snow-melt and rainfall in recent years. But it is heartening to see intelligent people turning to renewable and clean energy sources, since governments and corporations show little interest in doing so, despite the benefits to all that would occur.
Imagine the employment created by development of clean energy across the nation, across the planet? And the benefits to Mother Earth and humankind if this was wide-scale? Some of us have been saying this for 35 years. (They thought us lunatics back then.) That is when we should have been beginning. But better late than never. And First Nations is leading the way, at least in the Alberni Valley. Yay!