Humanitarian Disaster

Imagine looking through a window at any environment that is particularly significant to you. Reflect on the scene, paying close attention to the relation between what you are seeing and why it is meaningful to you.

Not through tinted glass, or windows fringed with laced curtains, I stared out at the vast expanse. I was observing a beautiful environment, one of unblemished forests and cultivated Elysian fields. But this was an optimistic view because the cranes were glaring at me, ready to begin the construction of the dam and reservoir as part of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project Treaty. The farmer in whose hut I was standing expressed his melancholy; I recoiled in response. All I saw was the green of the forests and the livelihood that the arable land depicted, one that would be altered with false hopes of relocation and rehabilitation. I should have been in my element; this was such an oft-debated contemporary issue. Standing there in a foreign land with a man who spoke an alien language interjected by hand actions bespeaking vehemence, I understood that the same issues plagued the entire world. I could relate because in my own country, dam and hydroelectric power station building had lead to the loss of many sub-species and entire ecosystems. It had upset the balance of nature, leading to flooding and destruction.The view made me reflect on how our every action as a community or individual affected our environment and how selfish it was for us to harm the environment in the name of development. As for the farmer, he shared the same fate as other plants and animals dwelling in that region; These were the last few months at his home. This scene was the last glimpse of what would remain, it made me cherish every moment my eyes beheld this sight. The scene was also a depiction of how nature should be. Truly, we should leave an untouched environment and let it remain as it is, pristine and thriving.

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