According to a recent comprehensive study, global warming has already bled Antarctica, which is larger than Europe, of about 2.7 trillion tons of ice. This enormous amount of ice has already raised global sea levels by as much as a centimeter (Meyer, 2018). Massive deforestation still occurs in the Amazon Basin, and across large swathes of Sub-Saharan Africa, Indonesia, Malaysia and West Papua. This environmental degradation has created climate change, destruction of the natural world, and the outbreak of new viral illness (H1N1 [Swine Flu], H1N5 [Avian Flu], SARS, MERS, Ebola, Covid-19)
How have climate change, drought, famine, and environmental degradation contributed to the current global pandemic? Is it too late to reverse the damage?
What lesson have we learned about the illegal trade in wild animals, animals in danger of extinction, and the unscientific and primitive medical practices of using the body parts of endangered species as medicines in some countries?
To what extent does science remain “as a candle in the dark” (Sagan, 1995) as we struggle with managing a global environmental and health crisis of our own making? Who, if anyone, will be held accountable for our dying planet?
Can we feed the growing population on the planet through our current food supply chain? How might the global pandemic alter the way we operate our current food chain and food supplies across the globe?
Will the post-pandemic world really be different? Will we ever find the will to eliminate poverty, unequal distribution of wealth, and unequal access to healthcare?