Coming together for Earth

Getting past the partisanship in a common goal to protect the environment

This week we present our Green Issue, published on the run-up to Earth Day (April 22). It’s also the eighth anniversary of Greenways, our weekly sustainability section. Over the years, we’ve published more than 400 environmentally themed stories, and that’s not including the ones that ran as a news or cover story.

CN&R’s readers have largely embraced our coverage of the local environmental realm, but there are always holdouts. We hope to win them over at some point.

For our part, it’s hard to understand why some people oppose the environmental movement. Even from a business perspective, it makes sense to protect our natural resources. For example, think about what life would be like if we didn’t have clean water to drink and to irrigate our farmland. Consider what it would be like to rely on some far-away place for this life-sustaining element.

We’re talking about major financial consequences on top of quality-of-life issues.

We certainly don’t want Butte County to end up resembling the armpit of California (i.e., the San Joaquin Valley), where years of irresponsible groundwater pumping for farming in the parched region have led to subsidence. Have you driven through there lately? It’s basically a sinking desert with toxic air and, thanks to fracking, some poisoned aquifers. We’ll pass, thanks.

Nope, we like life here in the North State, and we’d like our children and their children to enjoy it as well. It’s a shame, then, that environmentalism is so polarizing and that we can’t come together for a common goal (i.e., banning fracking in the county).

It doesn’t need to be that way. After all, the health of our communities, of our planet, affects everyone. If we can get past partisanship on green issues, the world will be a better place.