Here is the title of their press release: “This Earth Day, Get Outside and Take a #natureselfie; EPA and The Nature Conservancy Partner to Connect People with Nature.”
I mean, I get it. The EPA is pushing for EPA 2.0. The Agency wants to be relevant with young kids who spend most of their days and nights and all of their weekends absorbed in the screen in front of them rather than the world around them. Put a hashtag on it. Make it a selfie. (Did I hear Bieber?) The effort is almost costless for the agency. There is a citizen science aspect to it — collecting pictures of the same place over time, tying in changing climate and changing patterns of spring-time blossom. That’s nice.
But I still find the whole charade terribly sad. Instead of a natureselfie, what about just taking a nature? Deeper, it seems the whole premise promotes precisely the kind of mentality that drives environmental destruction: the egoistic idea that our place in nature is somehow preeminent, our image the one that makes the world whole.