Shall we end up like Atlanta?

So Atlanta could run out of water in a matter of weeks. Wake up call, folks? … As we watch this area explode with development at every turn [while] the powers that be keep insisting that growth is good, shouldn’t we look at the trouble Atlanta is in and take heed?

In Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, he shows a set of scales with gold bars on one side and the Earth on the other. Man, those gold bars sure look good! [But] who is getting those gold bars as the mountains are scraped clear down to the dirt? And lo and behold—these gold-bar diggers are spending lots of money on our candidates for offices locally and nationally, so they can continue to pillage the Earth unimpaired.

Eckhart Tolle said something like: You cannot just have growth or it will turn into a monster that will eventually consume itself! There will have to be a contraction for balance. Will that be a recession? Or worse? … At this point, every single person should be aware of what we are doing to the planet and taking some sort of action. At least have fewer kids!

Meanwhile, I have seen the Asheville I love turn into a traffic jam. Trying to pull onto Merrimon is a scary thought anymore, and I am tending to avoid driving into town. When will others start feeling the same in ever-increasing numbers—when the Ellington and condos are all up and the roads are literally gridlocked? Weaverville is getting just as bad. Try walking across Main Street, where no one stops for pedestrians.

For all the attention the Asheville Chamber of Commerce wanted to bring to Asheville, if it is a nightmare to navigate, who will want to “relax” here? This was supposed to be a place to escape to, not deal with the same damn things as home! People are leaving Atlanta to escape the congestion and road rage, the suburban sprawl and violent crimes. Many have moved here only to find this area going in the same direction.

Can’t we learn from others’ mistakes? … As this drought continues, we could very well face the water shortages like Atlanta is having. How much water will [be consumed by] these gargantuan houses and golf courses that are being built all over these mountains (not to mention everything else they consume)? When will our policymakers consider the big picture and the future and be strong enough to make policies that will truly protect this area from overdevelopment and overconsumption?

I guess when we run out of water and we pollute the environment to the point that we are dying off faster than we are reproducing, then people won’t ignore the problem any more. The contraction will take care of that for us.

— Troy Amastar


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6 thoughts on “Shall we end up like Atlanta?

  1. Asheville Native

    Mother earth will correct our misdeeds in her own time and she’ll persevere long after WE have created an environment that is no longer sustainable for man/woman kind. We’re all culpable. Rest easy in your new Hummer with those thoughts people.

  2. That maybe the world doesn’t need saving. That maybe the experiment has failed and we deserve whatever horrible conclusion you think we are headed towards.

  3. Asheville Native

    No sorry, that’s not what I wanted to express. Each individual, each family has to take responsibility for the inpact their everyday actions take on the environment. Recycle or not to recycle? Sell untouched landed to a developer or keep it in the family for the next generation to hike, bike, hunt, fish, explore and preserve?…and on and on. To my point – if WE (notice I say we)don’t step it up and turn it around fast we’re leaving it to mother nature to do it for us and likely that means that either the human population is greatly diminished or extinct. Unfortunely, I know and hear of too many who think the destruction of nature is overrated and business as usual and a flourishing economy at any cost is the only direction to go; hence my first comment. I’m not “chicken little”, just forward thinking. B.T.W. enjoyed your piece on local rock.

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