Whether you’re on the ground supporting the no-fly movement, or because of COVID-19 your travel life has been a little odd over the last couple of years – maybe you found different or other things to do.
Perhaps you discovered a kind of recreation that wasn’t available to previous generations in times of lockdown or war. One rainy afternoon I found myself on a gravel road winding through a vast plain with stunning vistas stretching out in all directions. To the right of me was a great salt lake. In the distance, I could see high snow-covered peaks, and above that, white cirrus clouds painted on a blue sky. I then entered a reddish desert, where off in the distance could be seen the looming stratovolcano Palpana, with its multicolored slopes and ridges, topped with a snow-covered caldera. As I went further down the road, more volcanoes appeared on the horizon with stunning colours beneath a perfectly blue sky.
Now of course I wasn’t actually on Ruta 21 in Chile on the border with Bolivia, but I was driving with Street View on Google Maps. I had a great sense of what it was like being there, without the stress of connecting flights, bad meals, rental cars… or spewing carbon into the atmosphere.
Using Google Maps, a ‘traveller’ can go on hiking trips, and view a ton of fantastic photos. Virtual travel in 4k or 8k is here
The youth of the planet have called for a No-Fly movement, which means no-fly. It doesn’t mean buying carbon offsets, or paying a carbon tax, and then flying anyway. It means no flying until the climate emergency is over, or until a time when planes switch to hydrogen/electric. To have Snowbirds take flight during the climate emergency is a gigantic middle finger to the no-fly movement, and to the fate of a livable Earth. The carbon the Snowbirds will put into the atmosphere over the next couple of weeks is going to be up there for 300 years.