The season is more muted and sombre than it has been for a good while as we hear of fishermen lost in the surrounding channel sea, migrant boats capsizing, continuing war in Ukraine, cost of living pressures and lives lost in an explosion in our neighbouring island of Jersey just this week.
But there are good stories too and as is so often the case, technology is a helper and still capable of miracles. Starlink broadband served as a vital communication line in war torn Ukraine, complementing precarious traditional telecommunication infrastructures. After decades, as we approach Christmas we learn that scientists have taken a major step toward fusion power and the hope of harnessing nuclear fusion to generate clean energy. The growing power of mobile communications allows us to reliably coordinate with travellers delayed by bad weather - a stress reliever we can’t imagine how we managed without.
Technology awes, for sure, but none of this is done without the effort and vision of people. In Guernsey this year we saw the start of the replacement by Sure of a telecoms network made of metal with one that will be made of glass. It was a year when Starlink looked to be licensed in Guernsey to provide its unique satellite broadband service to Islanders. Next year the wonder technology of next generation mobile will undoubtedly bring even greater surprises for society that we can tap into here in Guernsey.
People who work at utilities make this all happen and the irony is that the better they do what they do the more we take it for granted. No small level of effort and skill makes that possible and the often, unheralded backbone of so much of what we rely on, are local people working on an international stage.
So, a special cheer not only to the wonder of ground-breaking technologies, but also to the heroes and helpers, and the daily miracles that these invisible Santa Clauses perform to keep us safe, warm and connected. Let’s face it most of the presents these days wouldn’t work without them!
May the spirit of this Christmas, hope and peace, stay on you for as long as it possibly can and may 2023 be very kind to you.