A Failed Vision of Environmental Restoration
FAILURE IS NOT AN OPTION
On our recent visit, we went to look at a 37-acre property that recently came on the market. In the description, it stated that there was a pond and that it would be a good candidate for preservation, located a short drive into the bush, down a farming road, just north-west of the Beautiful mountain rimmed village of San Antonio. On the gate was a large, hand painted, tattered wooden sign stating the intentions of the previous owner to "restore the vegetation system".
The fellow that had lived there had some time ago moved to Alaska but his presence was still somehow palpable. A sense of frustration, even sadness seemed to permeate the entire area even before seeing the sign. There was a screened in platform for sleeping and a concrete and old tire constructed shelter for storage that provided protection from fire and was a place for the composting toilet. The man moved there seven years ago. After only two years, the stream dried up due to deforestation. The lined pond that he constructed looked less than fresh with the dry season fast approaching.
One can only wonder how this man must have felt after losing what can only be described as a battle. It was nearing 100 degrees and it felt as though we were standing at ground zero of environmentalism. You have to take a stand. We were reminded of our recent tragedy when loggers entered our 50-acre virgin rain forest preserve and took down a dozen trees. Where do we find the strength? How can we continue his vision? How can we explain to the locals and make them understand the larger issues that confront all of us? The sadness of this scene was draining. It took some time to recover, the sense of despair was overpowering.