Estonia’s Greens Singing the Blues | The Institute for Creation Research
Estonia’s Greens Singing the Blues
Estonia’s peaceful outbreak from the former Soviet Union is famously known as the “Singing Revolution”1—but its Green Party is now singing the blues.2

Despite years or energetic activism, fighting industry-blamed “global warming,” the Green Party continues to protest against infrastructure improvements from outside of Estonia’s Parliament.

The Greens’ lack of success is not for lack of effort. Dario Cavegn, a global warming advocate and former managing editor of ERR News, opines as to why this is so.

It's the era of undeniable evidence [sic] of global warming, but there isn't a single Greens MP [Member of Parliament] in Estonia's parliament. The Fukushima nuclear disaster [of 2011] took place less than a decade ago, and while other EU member states are working on putting an end to nuclear energy production, the discussion to build a new power plant is gaining momentum and has, so far, been met with no substantial opposition in Estonia. Most puzzling of all, while all of this is happening, is that what the Estonian environmentalists are actually busy with is protesting against a railway project.2

The Green Party oppose the building of the EU’s Rail Baltica, a high-speed railway to run from Poland’s Warsaw to Estonia’s Tallinn (through Latvia and Lithuania), and from Tallinn across the Baltic Sea to Sweden’s Helsinki. Green Party advocates are frustrated, however, because Estonia’s voters are not currently backing the Green Party movement.

A few days ago, a call for a new green party by journalist Rainer Kerge led to considerable chatter on social media, [saying] that any green movement out to actually score seats in local and national elections would need to be able to "take itself seriously" and also come up with a platform that is "understandable" to the public. There is an obvious lack of coherence in the Estonian green movement. Interest groups typically form not around demands for new legislation but to protest against state projects, ranging from street intersections to supposed deforestation and, currently the most prominent, the Rail Baltica project.2

Put more bluntly, Estonia’s Green party is still smarting from a very dramatic and public embarrassment—marking it with a stigma of scientific ignorance.2,3

Past PR fiascos might provide a clue as to why nobody is listening. In 2017, green activists occupied a willow tree in Tallinn's Haabersti borough. The tree, to be cut down to make way for the extension of an intersection, was supposedly more than 300 years old [later claims were reduced to ~150 years], a "mother tree", as the slogans echoed through the scene and the Estonian media. The noise kicked up by the activists was enough to make mainstream politicians, such as then-MP Eerik-Niiles Kross (Reform), carefully align themselves with the cause.2

But the protesters’ defense of Tallinn’s old “mother” willow did not succeed.

Early [in the] morning, police in Tallinn began clearing out demonstrators guarding a white willow in Haabersti slated to be cut down in the course of the reconstruction of an adjacent traffic circle. At 6:47 a.m., two activists remained up in the tree itself and police weighed different options for luring them down. Dozens of police were on the scene, including riot police … [Soon] a rescue truck with a ladder arrived on the scene to safely remove the two activists from the tree. …3

Rescue workers placed an inflatable mattress below the tree in case either demonstrator should accidentally fall from the tree. One of the activists who had been tenting on site told ERR's radio news that the police arrived unexpectedly that morning. They had their telephone ready to call more people to the scene, but were unable to grab it. "Sad that things are resolved this way in our country," they commented.3

The confrontational drama, resolved by riot police, removed the Green Party protesters from the threatened “mother tree,” a White Willow.2,3

Until it all came to a sudden end, namely when an arborist explained that willows of the kind [Salix alba] in question rarely lived beyond 75 years, incidentally the rough age of the tree so heatedly defended [although earlier claims exceeded 100 years]. The green scene grew very quiet very quickly.2

Oops. Foiled by real-world science, again. It seems that the noise opposing the White Willow’s removal wasn’t actually based on valid botany.2,4

Seems like déjà vu all over again. Global warming activists constantly raise false alarms about the sky falling, such as the now-removed signs that warned of Montana glaciers that were—according to cherry-picked math-modeling—supposed to have melted completely away by this year.5

So, if you have a White Willow tree, maybe you should hug it before it turns 75 years old.6 Or, you can appreciate looking carefully at trees as living exhibits of God’s handiwork, which He made, both to show His glory and to serve the needs of humans and animals.7

References
1. Johnson, J. J. S. 2019. Making a Joyful Noise in Estonia’s Tallinn: Common Swifts [Apus apus] Winging in Acrobatic Murmurations. Nordic Legacy Series (Norwegian Society of Texas, Fort Worth, Texas, April 28, 2019), pages 9-12.
2. Cavegn, D. 2020. Opinion: Trials and tribulations of Estonia's green movement. Eesti Rahvusringhääling News. Posted on ERR.ee, accessed May 5, 2020. [https://news.err.ee/1085822/opinion-tri
als-and-tribulations-of-estonia-s-green-
movement]
3. Vahtla, A. 2017. Police Clear Out Demonstrators Guarding Haabersti Willow. Eesti Rahvusringhääling News. Posted on ERR.ee accessed May 5, 2020.
4. Houston-Durrant, T., D. de Rigo, et al. (n.d.). Salix alba in Europe: Distribution, Habitat, Usage and Threats. European Atlas of Forest Tree Species, Joint Research Centre, European Commission. Posted on forest.jrc.ec.europa.eu, accessed May 5, 2020. See also Tomkins, J. 2010. Extreme Cold Can Be an Inconvenient Truth. Acts & Facts. 39(3): 8-9.
5. Johnson, J. J. S. 2020. Signs of the Times: Glacier Meltdown. Acts & Facts. 49(4):21; Johnson, J. J. S. Hot Fudge Sundaes and Cherry-Picked Statistics. COVID-19 News. Posted on ICR.org April 19, 2020, accessed May 5, 2020; Regarding the global warming “climategate” scandal, see, Radford, B. 2009. The Reality of 'Climategate'. LiveScience. Posted on LiveScience.com December 6, 2009, accessed May 5, 2020.
6. Johnson, J. J. S. 2020. Tree-Hugging Revival. COVID-19 News. Posted on ICR.org May 7, 2020, accessed May 8, 2020.
7. Deuteronomy 20:19-20; Psalm 104:16-17. See also Sherwin, F. 2015. Trees: An Engineering Wonder. Acts & Facts. 44(9):10-12.

*Dr. Johnson is Associate Professor of Apologetics and Chief Academic Officer at the Institute for Creation Research.
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