- by Thorsten Arnold

Owen Sound is not in a climate crisis. The rest of the world may be - but the middle of the Great Lakes happens to be the most resilient, best protected place on Earth. So many regions are experiencing a crisis while in our neck of the woods, things remain mostly "normal". That's what happens if you sit in the middle of the Earth's biggest terrestrial temperature buffer.

We will soon however be facing many other crises. Already, investment capital is pouring into our region, buying up agricultural land. Already, 300,000 Hong Kong residents have Canadian citizenship - because it's their safe haven. An Arab friend just gave birth in Canada to give a Canadian citizenship to his child. And he is one of many choosing that option. In the future, migration will be beyond anything that anyone can imagine today.

So while the world starts being in a climate crisis (ask Puerto Rico, the Middle East, and many other areas), our region will be in a moral dilemma. Either put up fences with machine guns to defend us against migration, or we find a better way to live with "sitting in a safe spot". And: safe is relative, of course. There will be adverse weather burdening our municipal roads, our budgets, our everything to a level that will change the fundamental glue of our society. But relatively, Owen Sound IS safer than most other places.

My question to our region: What responsibilities come from living in the world's largest terrestrial temperature buffer? Maybe we can actually contribute something positive, instead of just doing as little as possible. My concern is that our region will be morally hollowing itself out by looking away while others go under.

Dr. Thorsten Arnold offers talks on biosphere regeneration in agriculture for building climate resilience. ThorstenArnold.com

Photo: Bronze sculpture by David W. Moore, memorial to victims of a storm that killed more than 6000 in Galveston, Texas.


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