"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Sunday 1 April 2012


Which would you rather have in your "backyard"?

This - which fills our earth, air and water with pollutants?
An example of the visible result of fracking on
the land and the environment - below ground - 

you don't want to see, or know.
Or this?
The SKA radio telescope
image source: 21stcentury.blogspot
The latter will provide information of this planets past, on behalf of, and for the benefit of, the future well being of this entire planet and all it's inhabitants?

If we are given the honour of hosting the SKA (Square Kilometer Array) radio telescope - the world's largest telescope - it will provide hundreds of millions in revenue for the country.  Hundred of millions of clean, greener revenue.  And, best of all, the site integrity is guaranteed.  

South Africa is the ultimate site for the SKA 

  • Our superb radio-quiet environment is legally protected
  • We offer the best value; most affordable option and maximum return on investment
  • We have excellent infrastructure already in place
  • Our climate and altitude match the SKA requirements perfectly
  • Our industries and expertise are world-class
  • We've proven we can do it - KAT-7 telescope already in place and working
  • Our innovative, cutting-edge pathfinder - 64-dish MeerKAT - is under construction
  • South Africa's government is totally committed to the SKA
  • We have the full support of our African partners
  • We have partners around the globe
  • We are developing future capacity across the continent
  • Our history of leading astronomy research goes back more than 200 years

Hosting the SKA will allow this country the opportunity of preserving the historical and anthropological specimens of the site for future generations.  Bursaries and scholarships are on offer.  And it will generate genuine local employment, and the sorely needed return / influx, and retention, of a highly skilled workforce.

Other benefits of the proposed SKA South Africa site include:

And, furthermore, it will not only benefit this country, but Africa as a whole, for the array will be scattered over thousands of kilometers.

image source:

But - seems like our government is busy, yet again.  For they want it all.  

image source:

"Hosting the SKA will underscore Africa's capability in science and innovation... " says South African President Jacob Zuma.

Unfortunately, it's one or the other.  SKA or fracking?  And I'm talking to all you guys in "power" - all those elected officials who now need to prove they are worthy of holding those positions. 
The distance between the proposed core of the SKA
and the "Treasure the Karoo"

anti-fracking action group - 255kms!
* "...very little (light) pollution" and "... no conflicting economic activities".  Have you forgotten this?  For you can't have both.  Either you offer the SKA site as it is now - an historically rich, pristine and unpolluted Karoo, or you offer this precious site as a source of future massive pollution.  It's your choice!

Can you look to the future - long term - or is your shortsightedness going to be financially motivated?

Do the right thing.  For the sake of this planet, and for all our children's children...

... DO the right thing.


  1. This sounds like an amazing telescope!

  2. Doesn't it seem so so obvious, i hope they make the right choice...

  3. Astra - Greed will dictate, I fear.

  4. A fascinating, albeit sad, contradiction - destruction or knowledge. I flipped through Ruth's book yesterday and saw these words that are most fitting for this conversation -

    "We are to nurture and assist Mother Nature as she tries to heal the planet from greed's onslaught.” - Ruth Trowbridge

    1. Mr H - For some reason your comment was relegated to my Spam box - dunno why????

      There could not be a true-er comment - thank you for sharing :)

  5. That is so cool to think about the implications of the radio telescope array. Is there any sort of online petition or maybe a place to make comments? I'd gladly do it and urge others as well.

    I hope science wins over greed!

  6. I wonder which we'll get. The astronomers? Or the disaster?

  7. Good luck! Sometimes people can look back in regret and say "we had no way of knowing how important out decision would be," but this is a case where longterm significance is obvious.

  8. I'd rather look at the natural stars than where there's been a man made moonscape!

  9. Please, no more fracking! The choice seems quite obvious. I too am curious about an online petition....I'd sign it, even though I am on the other end of the world. ;-)

  10. This is a general reply as I need to apologize for not answering your comments sooner. The entire internet connection has been down in our part of town since Sunday lunchtime - very frustrating!!!!

    1st Man - I, too hope that science wins - we'll hopefully find out tomorrow. The (anti-fracking) petition sites are on the right hand side of my blog.

    Diana - I pray for the astronomical result.

    Quinn - Exactly - no excuses in the future!

    Robyn - And aren't the stars beautiful - even to the untrained eye :)

    Ali - Welcome :) I agree - NO MORE FRACKING! Please see the reply to 1st Man for the petition links.


Thank you for taking the time to comment - it makes my day and removes the "loneliness' of sitting at my screen blogging supposedly to myself ;) I try and reply as quickly as possible so please forgive me if sometimes my response is delayed.