I have lived many lives but one thing that has remained constant is my love for nature and all it has to offer. I have fished in some rivers and lived by the banks of others. I have crossed many seas and oceans, some by boat and others by air. As an adventurer and an explorer, I have often pondered without relenting about the wonders of nature; the composition of water that occupies over two-thirds of the land space of the planet earth, some waters are salty, some tasteless and most are colourless. I have seen how the lakes and oasis have their parts and settlement but when disturbed by the self-proclaimed superior beings known as human beings they create branches and move on despite the fact that nature created the rivers, the seas and the oceans before the creation of man and woman. The waters everywhere have become the most important component of life asides the air that we breathe and the food that we eat.
Earlier, civilization identified that living by the river or by the sea and overlooking them provides for a better living environment particularly for the rich and wealthy. Living by the river, the ocean and overlooking the sea has become very fashionable, attracting reputable hotels and homes all over the world as can be seen from houses and hotels that have been built on the banks of River Thames, River Niger, the Atlantic and the Mediterranean Sea without a proper ecological study and evaluation.
Some Islands that nature provided in the middle of seas and oceans or alongside rivers that are meant for migrating animals are now being taken over by development for the purpose of human leisure and pleasure as we build casinos, resorts and so much more on these spaces thereby putting a lot of pressure on the waters and making the sea level to rise. We the humans cannot continue that way and expect nature to take all that without fighting back.
Some of these developments have already started going under and may get worse in the coming years as we have come to understand that climate change is part of nature’s way of fighting back. If the animals that migrate from continent to continent driven by nature are without a place to break during their migration, sooner or later, migration will reduce, some animals will be lost along the way and the humans that stand to benefit the most from a balanced ecosystem will suffer. Another consequence of destroying the areas meant for animals is that as the forests continue to be depleted, there will be less wildlife to complement our living.
In Nigeria, the forest that has most, if not all of our wildlife has been depleted by over 30 percent since independence and now therefore most of the wild animals that provide food and games are no more. This is because most have either been killed in the process or have migrated by the day through our forests in Cross River to Cameroon and through Cameroon to Central and East Africa for a better life and more welcoming environment. The same goes for the marine lives where our fishing industry is unregulated. We continuously catch the baby fish knowing very well that if we continue that way there will be no big fish to catch in the near future.
The flood plain and the marsh lands are being replaced by developments and removed from the geography of the planet earth. The marsh lands that harbour some of the marine lives that are too weak to operate at sea are also being infringed upon all in the name of expanding the undocumented economy. In my previous writings, I have always stated that I am not against development but that we must maintain a balance that offers respect for other creatures that inhabit the planet earth with us. To maintain such balance means that as we develop real estate properties that attract huge returns by the sea, we must also provide for the replenishment that is needed for adaptation. We also need to know when to stop, not every piece of earth must be built on. What we the humans must understand and appreciate about the animals that live in the wild and the marine lives that live by the ocean and seas is that they can do without us but we cannot do without them.
They take care of their lives and at the time of migration due to weather changes, they leave enough waste on the lands and the bed of the sea. Those by the lands will regenerate enough food for them within a very short time for when they return back and since most animals are vegetarians, the vegetation needed for their survival returns to the lands and the birds of the sea through evolution. Those that leave their waste by the floor of the ocean regenerate into eggs that provide for the marine lives that we eat as food.
We the humans can no longer continue taking over the lands, polluting the air and driving away the seas. This is more than just a moral obligation; it is one necessary for survival.