Featured writer: Mike Bond
I wrote SAVING PARADISE to help save one of the most beautiful places on earth – Molokai. Unknown to most folks but rated by National Geographic as the world’s sixth most beautiful island, it is, as I say in SAVING PARADISE, “much more beautiful than that.”
With the world’s tallest sea cliffs on one side and the longest coral reef north of Australia on the other, Molokai is a paradise of rain forests, mountains, green bush, homeland farms, tawny savannas and near-deserts. There are no stoplights, no buildings higher than a palm tree, few places to shop, one hotel and a couple of restaurants. Residents say simply, “Molokai’s in your DNA,” to explain its seduction, why when you leave you just have to come back.
Four years ago a group of energy companies decided to take over Molokai for a huge industrial wind project that would have sent power via an undersea high voltage cable through the National Humpback Whale Sanctuary to Honolulu. Although wind projects do not lower greenhouse gases or fossil fuel use, they have enormous negative environmental, social and economic impacts. But they do make billions of dollars of taxpayer subsidies for energy companies and investment banks – money our nation has to borrow and can probably never repay.
This project would have destroyed Molokai, and after four years the island’s people have finally defeated it. But we know more dangers await us. That’s what happens when you live in paradise, everyone wants a piece.
The world was once full of paradises, but now they’re running out. Much of where the land meets the seas is now concrete – the formerly beautiful coasts of Spain, Mexico, Bali, Florida and so many other places. “Los Angeles” means “The Angels”, because once there was no more beautiful spot on earth. Even at night our earth glows with a human melanoma.
Our exploding human population will soon put an end to paradise. It will be a world of cities and deserts. So those of us who love the unknown, who love travel to mysterious and exciting places, we too must join the fight to save what’s left of the magical beauty of this earth. We too must take part in saving Paradise.