I wasn’t able to make it downtown on Thursday for Chris Turner’s talk, but I continue to think about the three images that remained central in my mind when I read his book, The War on Science: Muzzled Scientists and Wilfull Blindness in Stephen Harper’s Canada. The first was a generic Ontario lake, the second: a shot from V for Vendetta of High Chancellor Adam Sutler shouting to his government groupies from a giant TV screen. The third (and most powerful) image was that of Philippines Climate Change Commissioner Yeb Saño when he broke down at the COP19 Climate Summit in Warsaw earlier this month while pleading with his fellow international delegates to translate climate change promises and signatures into actions. (I encourage everyone to watch the full video of his speech, but if 17 minutes is too long, the transcript can be found here.) And, while I’ll be the first to admit that these images may seem a bit random and disconnected, I think that in many ways, they actually embody the past, present, and future of the Canadian government’s relationship with science and, in particular, the environment.
Tomorrow is World Oceans Day. Today I am eating apricots. These small, pastel orange fruits always remind me of warm evenings at the beach. And, I’m not quite sure why (although I assume some higher level organic chemistry is involved), but the delightful taste produced when the sweetness of their flesh mixes with the saltiness of the air seems to provide me with the best circumstances for contemplating life. But, while one would probably assume that my current thoughts are organizing themselves into an exciting post in honour of this special day, the truth is, they’re not. Because I don’t really know what to say. Of course this dilemma is not for lack of want, or knowledge of the subject matter; it is because—for the first time in my life—I am trying to decide how I feel about the ocean. Well, not the ocean itself. More specifically, the future of the ocean. And how young fisheries scientists, like myself, fit in.