David Suzuki

Air Dates: November 17-19, 2012

This week's guest on REPORT FROM SANTA FE
is Dr. David Suzuki, scientist, geneticist, and author of
52 books. He is considered a Canadian icon having received the Order of Canada, and also named one of ten of the “Greatest Canadians” that have ever lived.

Dr. Suzuki has been awarded 27 honorary degrees, as well
as UNESCO's Kalinga Prize for the Popularization of
Science, the UN Environment Program Medal, and the 2009
Right Livelihood Award (also known as the Alternative
Nobel Prize). He is a popular science broadcaster and
hosted CBC's “The Nature of Things,” seen in over 50
nations, from the 1970s.

David Suzuki talks with Lorene Mills about big ideas about
the human race. He cites one of humanity's earliest
abilities, to think and act with foresight, and contrasts
that with the disconnect happening now regarding the
future of humanity and the destruction of the environment.
He calls on the Elders of our time, those who remember a
truly different global environment, to step into a role of
education and custodianship.

He stresses how much the environment is a part of us, as
much as we are a part of it, and challenges us to seize
this moment in time to take action to save the resources
we have left, and to use the foresight that makes us,
fundamentally, human. We have become a force of nature.
Basically we’ve become so powerful that we are altering
the chemical, physical, and biological properties of the
planet. So, we are a super species. There’s never been a
species able to do this in the four billion years that
life has existed on the planet.

-- QUOTES from Suzuki:

“It is really mystifying to me that people who say the
economy is the highest priority, it is everything. Well,
surely if the economy is the highest priority, we ought to
be asking, what is an economy for? How much is enough? Are there any limits? We ought to be asking, are we happier
with all this stuff? I mean surely those are critical
questions. But no, we just take the economy as something
we’ve got to keep serving, it’s got to keep growing, or
else we’re in deep trouble. There are a lot of people
saying we’re at the end of growth.”

“We put everything together, and we did something no other
animal has - we invented an idea called the future. I mean
the future doesn’t exist except as an idea in the human
mind…. I believe foresight was the great characteristic
that enabled us to escape from Africa and literally take
over the planet. And yet today we have top scientists
using supercomputers in the best tradition of our species,
looking ahead, seeing where we’re going, and telling us
where the dangers lie. And they have been warning us for
40 years -- we are so powerful; we are changing the
chemistry of the atmosphere.”