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green@work : Magazine : Between Blue & Yellow : Sept/Oct 2001

Between Blue and Yellow
Tragic Consequences

by Katie Sosnowchik
Editorial Director

The horrors of September 11, 2001, are just a little more than 48 hours old as I write this. The surreal images of that day will live with us forever; the heartbreak that comes with the countless lives that were lost, the far-reaching and tragic consequences that come with the devastation and ruin of a city, the threat to our national and personal security—we are truly a people whose spirit has changed forever.

Daily tasks suddenly seem so very insignificant. So we sit glued to our televisions, and we pour over our newspapers. And we wonder, over and over again: What could have been done to prevent this? What can be done to prevent it from happening again?

The events of September 11 cannot help but hit home to all in the environmental community who strive to prevent another tragedy of tremendous proportions, one our senior columnist Carl Frankel describes as “the environmental catastrophe that awaits us.” For indeed, the gradual degradation of our environment is exactly that—a global catastrophe in the making. A catastrophe that also can be measured in lives lost, in the ruin of cities and in the menace to our peace and security. It also can be measured in the endangerment of animal and wildlife species and in the increase in poverty and human suffering—indeed, in the elimination of precious natural resources that are the very source for all life forms.

So, when we ask ourselves what could have been done to change that nightmarish Tuesday morning, let’s also ask what can be done to prevent this other tragedy as well, for we have it in our power to do just that. Hatred and prejudice—the sources behind the evil acts of September 11—are elusive enemies that are hard to battle. In our fight to save the planet, let’s try not be our own worst enemies.

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