Mahatma Gandhi once said, “The world has enough for everyone’s need, but not enough for everyone’s greed.”
A prime example of this is the October, November, December California methane gas leak, courtesy of SoCal Gas. The 800,000 metric ton and counting methane leak could have been averted and abated, if the area had been cemented over, and the company gave up future prospects of monetizing the gushing methane lines. But instead, we’ve got another TEPCO on our hands. So greedy for money, and the possibility of recouping lost money on what remains of the leaked gas, that instead of doing what is socially and environmentally right, they are attempting a long-shot pipe repair process, which means extra months of leaking methane. Too big to fail, SoCal Gas is unwilling to cut their losses, let alone admit their mistake. This seems to be an endless refrain in big energy corporations, begging the question of why such behemoths should even be allowed to continue to exist, as they are neither ready nor eager for any sort of accountability to the larger political-ecological community of beings they must be beholden to. Such energy corporations, bloated with the self-importance our energy-dependent society has pumped them up with, operate above the law, with no public oversight or emergency plan for protecting public health when all else fails. Instead, our crises, from the BP oil spill to Fukushima’s TEPCO disaster, to the Exxon Valdez, are dealt with in the most hurried and embarrassed ad hoc manner. Such an approach, with no Plan B, leaves us with an impoverished ecology, and a dangerously untethered and unactionable corporate scaffolding denuding the basic rights and liberties of actually existing people.
This has got to change.