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Posted April 1, 2010

Avatar's beauty exists in our world, too

Letter to the Editor

Valerie Robinson, Times Colonist, April 1, 2010

Avatar's beauty exists in our world, too
Click for larger image

Waterfalls spill out through the Pandora-like old growth forest of Avatar Grove near Port Renfrew, BC.
Photo by TJ Watt

So I finally went to see Avatar in 3-D. It was breathtaking, of course. But what struck me the most was at the end; I realized that I had viewed this epic story of environmental degradation through plastic 3-D glasses made in China.

There was a box to "recycle" them at the exit, but when I asked an attendant what happened to the 3-D glasses in that box, she said they got shipped to Toronto to meet an unknown fate.

The 3-D glasses are one product among millions that are used once and then discarded every day, without a thought about where the materials came from or where the product will end up, let alone what we could do to reduce waste. Because of this mindless consumption, we are making our planet uninhabitable.

Recently, I visited one of the few remaining areas of low-elevation old-growth forest on southern Vancouver Island, aptly nicknamed Avatar Grove. Breathtaking beauty exists in the real world too. However, the largest ancient trees are marked for logging. If everyone in B.C. who enjoyed Avatar stood up to save our few remaining ancient forests, that just might offset the environmental cost of all those 3-D glasses.


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