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Georgia van Gils

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Technology's Beauty Has Overtaken Our Love for Nature

Posted: 10/12/2012 00:00

A couple of weeks ago, the Coalition government released the long-awaited Energy Bill, its primary goal being to make the UK more self-reliant and renewable when it comes to energy.

A result of this bill is an average rise of a £100 in our energy bills. Across the internet, the bill was greeted with shaking heads and disconsolate cries from consumers. "A rise in my bill in order to nourish cleaner and greener energy you say? No thank you!" Oh for Pete's sake...

What really perplexes me about this railing against the rise in our bills is the impression it will give to younger generations. What effect will this have on our children's desire to commit to conservation opposed to spending a couple of hours dibbling over Miniclip? Already kids seem disenchanted with Mother Earth, failing to see the bigger picture behind their iPhone 5's four-inch screen.

With the rapid advancement in technology, children cannot comprehend the intricate and complex path a seed must take to become a mighty ash (no, I am not a hippy with a vast Jefferson Airplane collection, my parents just took my outside every once in a while). Mobile phones now offer you updates in seconds, that's right, you can find out how good Karen's muffin was at lunch literally like, five minutes after she friggin' ate it, but it takes more time to comprehend growth and sustainability.

Or perhaps it isn't that technology is more convenient and user friendly, perhaps people may now believe they can grasp the majesty of nature in an HD format, sunken into a cream-coloured sofa, armed with a transparent gaze into the 'future'. Computer screens are offering kids a playground of worldwide interaction, stunning graphics and giggly games that supply endless neon stimulation. Maybe we think we have enough information on "nature, dude".

It may not just be the apparent bitterness by some towards sustainability that scuppers the future of our little homosapiens: 69% of children aged between two and five can use a computer mouse, but only 11% can tie their own shoelaces. How are we to inspire a generation of children to commit to sustainability when they can't tie their shoelaces? How can we take them outside if they're just going to fall over?

My brow furrows at the idea that we are shunning the need to sustain our planet and placing technology on a fabricated pedestal, shrugging off the fact that the Energy Bill arguably wants better for the future, and instead ranting about the present rise in price.

We should be encouraging children who would rather press buttons to go outside and understand the need for investment in our energy future. But let's be honest, the graphics just aren't as good at the National Trust.

 

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