One element which has not been given much credence or attention is the very essential one of an environmentally sound planet.
Seldom are we hearing anything solid regarding the candidates’ views on this extremely pertinent issue.
A recent visit to the 49th state (Alaska) brought the environment front and center. Picture the incredibly majestic Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve with a 250 foot glacial height, and a base which is about 100 feet below sea level. The natural wildlife life here is no less impressive, with humpback whales, sea lions, Kodiak bears and innumerable fish and wildlife.
The Bald Eagle, which has a natural wingspan of seven to ten feet, is an amazing and majestic national mascot. This impressive bird lives here in Alaska abundantly but can be affected if its environment is not protected and maintained.
The rate of attrition of this natural saltwater glacier is escalating and maritime temperatures actually keep the bay from freezing over. Currently, the bay is over 1,000 feet deep and provides a unique glimpse into a majestic world of glaciers highlighted by their captivating hues of blue. Created by long wavelength colors of reds which are absorbed, the views are mindful of the sky’s intrinsic colors.
Alaska, which is often referred to as the final frontier (albeit space in many ways), offers a fantastic glimpse into both our past and the present.
Skagway, also known as the Alaska panhandle, is a former gold mining town which seems to somehow still be etched in its own history. Single story buildings are set against the backdrop of a majestic mountainous region and cruise ships, a historic railway system, and all terrain vehicles are its main transportation elements.
The White Pass and Yukon Route Railroad pass through daily encouraging tourists to relive the gold rush history created back in the 1800’s.
Juneau, the capital city of Alaska, is an amazing mix of natural beauty, majestic landscapes and an outdoor paradise for those who are adventurous.
Whale watching, glacier sightseeing, dog sledding, an incredible salmon hatchery (buoyed by the requisite export industry), and Glacier Gardens, all command your attention while giving you insight into this important element of our world landscape.
Founded in 1880, Juneau is 600 airline miles southeast of Anchorage and is the only state capital in the entire United States with absolutely no road access.
If you’ve ever witnessed the Iditarod (dog sledding at its finest) you know that it takes a lot of snow for these elegant and magnificent creatures to pull those sleds. For the past three winters, there has not been sufficient natural snow in place for this eagerly anticipated event. Snow was actually flown in from other nearby cities to provide the necessary amount; which speaks to the growing concern of global warming.
Living in Florida some thousands of miles away from the Alaskan territory allows us to push environmental issues to the fringe of our daily agendas. But when you’re right up close, with glaciers at your door and eagles flying overhead, it becomes a little more clear. Global warming is a very real and present danger.