Mother Earth/ Gaia ‘s Blog
Earth year 4,492,056,017

Mankind, My children!

Please listen to my story. I was born 4.5 billion years ago and for most of my life I was a lonely, barren and uninhabited rock floating through space. Then a miracle happened and to my great joy, I gradually changed into a planet with my land, oceans and air teaming with life and vegetation and all living eco systems in harmonious balance. I was delighted and proud to be a mother to such profusion of life and to become known throughout the Universe as the “blue” planet.

Mankind taking over the world

Photo: Courtesy of WWF

If the whole of my history to date was shown as 1 single hour, then in just the last few seconds of that hour, you, Mankind, were born and because of your energy and intelligence you became my favourites. I let you dominate, bully and exploit my other children, did not discipline you enough when you were young, did not teach you right from wrong and continually made excuses for your bad behaviour and kept forgiving you. As a result, I now see that I spoiled you. You came to think that the whole of Earth and its resources were yours for the taking and that no one else mattered. In your greed and uncaring way, you took whatever you wanted without ever asking for my permission or thinking about the consequences of your actions on other species sharing the planet and even on yourselves. That is why I am now writing to you as individuals directly to try to explain the problem more clearly and to show you what needs to be done to nurse me and your species back to health.

Did you know that

  • About 66 million primary school children attend classes hungry and 795 million people around the world are undernourished while 1.3 billion tonnes of food ends of rotting in bins or spoiling worldwide?
  • More than 1 billion people do not have access to fresh water and at least 1.8 billion people have to use drinking water that is polluted with human toilet waste?
  • One in 10 persons lives on less than $1.90 per day and 736 million people still live in extreme poverty?
  • Each day 1000 children die due to preventable water and sanitation related diarrhea diseases ?

What can YOU do?

Each week, for the next few weeks, I will give you some basic facts and information about one of the major problems facing both of us and which will influence our survival. In particular, I will challenge you each day and ask What can you do? (get used to this expression and challenge. This will be abbreviated to and pronounced as WCYDo (wich – ee – do) and I will be using this a lot in coming blogs!). After giving you some facts, I will suggest a number of simple actions that you, your family and friends can do to contribute to a solution. Please encourage others to befriend me and read my blogs and pass on the facts and proposed actions to all your family, friends and acquaintances. Ask them to then pass these on to their friends and acquaintances with the same instructions so that we can multiply the efforts to maximise our impact and to build a movement to take effective action to save us both.

Our work will start next week and tell others to join us to view these blog posts and to visit us on Facebook and Twitter to sign up for our newsletter and follow us. Get ready!

11. Sustainable cities and communities

SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities

Earth year 4,492,056,017
Mother Earth/ Gaia‘s Blog

Mankind, My children

In my first blog post I asked that you commit to following my blog for a few weeks to give me a chance to explain the most important issues affecting our joint survival. Subsequent Blog posts have started to give you some facts about the big and important Global issues that need to be addressed. In today’s Blog post I want to talk about the need to Sustainable Cities and Communities. 

The Problem

Photo Courtesy: Oxfam

Half of humanity – over 3.5 billion people now live in cities and by 2030 this will rise to be 60% of global population. Over 95% of such urban expansion will occur in the developing world where over 828 million people already live in slums and rubbish tips around cities. Such rapid urbanisation will exert even more pressure on freshwater supplies, sewage, environment and public health unless effective action is taken on a number of aspects to create safer, more sustainable ways of living in such communities.

Do you feel guilty when you see the suffering of the poor in developing countries and the terrible conditions in which many of them have to live and bring up their families? Do you get frustrated that little seems to be done to help such people? Do you get angry at the unfairness of the world where so many struggle to survive and feed their families? Now is your chance to do something to change the world!

The facts

1. 828 million poor people have to live in urban slums with very limited services
2. 95% of the expected future urban growth will occur in cities of the developing world
3. 90% of the 1.24 million global road accident deaths happen in low and middle income countries and up to 75%of the deaths in urban areas are to the poorest–pedestrians and cyclists!

WCYDo (wich-ee-do What Can You Do?)

1. Buy fair trade products to help poor workers have a living wage to feed their families
2. Fund raise or donate to charities that assist people in the developing world, such as,
3. Write to your politicians to increase aid and trade with developing world
4. Share the facts about global urbanisation with family and friends.
5. Write or emails to newspapers to request more coverage of this topic
6. Encouraging others to join campaigns or donate to charities

Encourage others to join us and to visit our Facebook feed at to sign up for our free newsletter and information about our proposed WCYDo App. See you next week on blog post 12.