I’ve dealt with data my entire life—mineralogical, test scores, demographics—along with all the things we do to data—label, digitize, visualize, archive. We literally have so much data we hardly know what to do with it.
This question prompted considerable head-scratching on my part, for although I thought I knew the answer, it’s complicated. Simply, the use of water, minerals, and fossil fuels are strongly tied to people with their politics, economics, beliefs, and actions.
The current use of the word ‘harvest’ in place of ‘mining’ on the deep sea floor is another sugar-coating or perhaps green-washing for a process that is difficult and dirty at best. At its worst, mining devastates people, their communities, and the environment.
I thought I was writing about the Earth when, in fact, I am writing about how a person constructs a world view. While writing about how other people might see the Earth, I’ve learned a lot about myself.
Broadening participation in geoscience has rightfully evolved into BElonging, Accessibility, Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion. In the meantime, geoscience has grown into a community that no longer relies primarily on white people to advocate for these principles. Where do I put my energies now? Natural resource justice for women and children in mining? Continued mentoring of geoscience students?
“Don’t talk about that” or “Who are you to write about that?” Scientists don’t really want to talk to social scientists, let alone artists. How do we get ‘all hands on deck’ to generate innovative solutions for the world’s pressing problems?