Bijindo – A hint of Thailand in Korea

Bijindo is an island just south of South Korea.  After enjoying a sunrise hike in Hwangmaesan we took the ferry from Tongyeong Ferry Terminal to Bejin Island (do means island in Korean).  The 40 minute trip went quickly as sea spray and fresh air came over the sides of the boat while a few seagulls entertained us by trailing behind and snatching chips out of the sky!

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Once on Bijindo it was easy to find our pension.  The whole island only has a few hundred people living on it in one small village and another smaller beach-side hamlet.  From afar it is easy to confuse Bijindo with one of Thailand’s many tropical paradises.

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“We Do Not Inherit the Earth from Our Ancestors; We Borrow It from Our Children”

“We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children”

-Moses Henry Cass

Hang En-8

Cass’s quote is especially important I lieu of the recent climate change “debate.”  Well, lets be honest, its not really a debate.  The conversation is akin to a child arguing with an adult over the benefits of brushing one’s teeth, eating healthy, how video games are good for studying or just about anything that has been scientifically proven yet people still deny.

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Seoraksan National Park, South Korea

For millennia humans have inherited the earth from our forefathers and continued to live off the land.  Only recently has our race begun to realize the impact we have on nature and the profound changes we set in motion.  Some changes are already irreversible (sure that’s a TV show but those facts check out).  The Earth’s temperature is rising and our best estimates of letting it continue on the current course are catastrophic.

 

 

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Jirisan National Park, South Korea

The thing to remember is that regardless of the current situation we need to get into Cass’ mentallity of “borrow[ing] Earth from our children.”  We hand it back to them in (hopefully) better condition than we were given it.  Humans are known for their ability to adapt and I am confident in our abilities to continue doing so.  I look forward to inventions that help us solve the issues that climate change is presenting.  I’m hopeful about future technology that could reverse the damage caused by our pollution.   A 19 year old is spearheading the ocean cleanup, scientists are hoping to lower the Earth’s temperature by using artificial trees or other inventions to suck the harmful CO2 out of the sky.

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East Sea from Daecheongbong, Seoraksan National Park, South Korea

The sun hasn’t set on us yet.  With the help of modern scientists, activists and everyday people we can keep this beautiful Earth for generations to come.  Soon we will return this borrowed planet to our offspring but until that day we have work to do.  Even if its just recycling and making a compost pile everyone can help clean up our planet  Get out there and make a difference so we can leave the best planet possible to our children!