Tag Archives: deforestation

could we use spy satellites for something USEFUL, please?

Satellite photos reveal the depredations of illegal loggers in Mexican forests, particularly in the winter home of the migratory monarch butterflies.

Is there any reason at all that we cannot have real-time monitoring of the freakin’ environment to ensure that wide-scale clearcutting, burning, stripmining, and other land and sea uses do not happen? It seems like a much more useful use of the already-existing satellite spy technologies. Instead of trying to zoom in on plots of pot or coca trees or the various personal activities of individuals, we could stop the poachers and other people who are destroying — and appropriating for their personal profit — our common natural heritage. I mean, come on. Here we have the frickin’ photographs that show large-scale abuses over the last year. But too little, too late. Those trees are gone, the butterfly habitat is gone, and it’s just frankly pure neglect and waste. We have the technology to do so much more, but we’ve chosen to deploy it — how? As toys for boys with silly war games and spy games. That waste, too, is some sort of environmental crime.

These are the kinds of bad choices and misplaced priorities that national governments are making. Entrusted with a significant portion of the resources and decisionmaking power of the world’s people, and squandering them.