If we want a long-term future for ourselves and our children, we need to learn about our country, and to nurture it – just as we hope that it will continue to support us. For all these reasons, Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) is vital to me because it allows me to express my love of my country.
We stand at a crossroads, where comprehension of our place in nature – of our true abilities and of our history – is supremely important. We have formed a global civilisation of unprecedented might, driven forward by the power of our minds, a civilisation which is transforming our Earth. We are masters of technology, and of comprehension, but it's what we believe that may, from now on, determine our fate.
Our world is a web of interdependencies woven so tightly it sometimes becomes love.
Well, to me science is nothing mysterious. It’s the world that we live in and it’s trying to understand the world we live in, and we can comprehend it in relatively simple terms and pass on that wonder and interest in this fantastic world we all live in very easily I think.
Evolution is on our side. The Earth is the ultimate manifestation of the evolutionary process and it’s not one of chaos, it’s one of coherence and co-operation.
I was born in Australia as a European and we are still coming to terms with our environment in Australia. It’s taken people a long time to realise they’re no longer living in Europe and they can no longer live according to the European way of living because to do that is to destroy the environment of Australia. There’s a mismatch between the people and their culture, and the land that they live in.
The pursuit of money is in some ways a very shallow thing and it won’t bring happiness unless your mind is prepared to use that money in ways that expand it and satisfy it. So, to me an interest in science and literature and the arts, is all part of just being a full human being, and of course you’ve got to make some money as well, but our education system it seems to me, should be producing fully rounded human beings who can say, ‘I’ve lead a really satisfying life. I’ve had all the tools I need to be able to lead a great life,’ rather than just, ‘I made some money.
I do feel that the honour comes with a deep obligation, for it speaks eloquently of the desire of Australians to address climate change. We are, on a per capita basis, the worst greenhouse polluters in the world and I don't think any of us want our children asking in future why we didn't give our utmost when it was still possible to influence the course of events.
I was trying to get people to see that you can’t just grow forever and hope that the environment will take care of itself.
I remain optimistic that we can turn things around, but I think we've got much less time than I thought to ensure our survival.