I had decided not to write another Earth
Meander until I had something positive to say. Enough
of wallowing in despair that the Earth is dying as kooky
fundamentalists wage war. The environmental sustainability
movement deserves and needs a dose of healthy skeptical
optimism. Until the last human pair gasps their final
breathe there is hope of our species' continued existence
and evolutionary advancement, however slim.
It would be nice if in the developed
world we did not lose civilized society and at least some
luxury comforts along the way to ecological collapse.
The human family has a choice and there are opportunities
to avoid this fate, while both saving the Planet and meeting
most if not all peoples' needs. It is for how long that
is in question.
The human race simply must change our
ways if the Earth is to survive. Extending the human family's
lifespan as a species will require consuming less and
sharing more so that all can meet basic needs, instead
connecting more with other people, nature and other non-consumptive
Much more can be done. Reduce frivolous
consumption, military spending and religious extremism
and increase social investments including on the environmental
front more sustainable development, core ecological protected
areas and ecological restoration. These are some of the
keys to survival. We have the tools - we lack the knowledge,
vision, will and leaders to usher
in an era of global ecological sustainability that is
just and equitable.
The very biological fabric of being
is threatened. We are going to have to save the Earth.
You and I. We have to, and by any means necessary. Ecosystems
are collapsing, and Gaia may no longer be able to regulate
her temperature, biogeochemical and biological systems
and balances. One way or another we must come together
to stop the growth machine's devouring of the global
ecological system's forests, atmosphere, water and oceans
and bring ourselves and society into harmony with each
other and Gaia.
We know we must reduce population, have
fewer children, live more simply, eat more frugally yet
well, tolerate and encourage diversity in all things,
and find ritual to celebrate our connection and utter
dependence upon each other, other species and ecosystems,
and Gaia - the global ecological system.
There is reason to be hopeful. We can
make the personal and societal changes to save ourselves
and the Earth. Truth always triumphs. And all species
including the hairless ape with the disposable thumbs'
most basic instinct is self survival. And we have the
new developments of transnational advocacy networks organizing,
agitating and revolting on the Internet across country
lines. Such networks exist to, amongst other things, stop
ecological destruction and attempt to reverse humanity's
The ability of world citizens to organize
upon a single environmental issue and broader progressive
social justice concerns has never been greater. In the
era of personal instant mass communication now anyone
anywhere can network and work with anyone and/or any network(s)
to do many things - including
organizing to preserve or conserve a special local ecosystem.
My own modest day job efforts at Ecological
Internet are a case in point of Internet based transnational
ecological sustainability advocacy networks. Proudly we
are a part of and help connect and inform a biocentric,
broad based, ecologically rigorous, local environmental
sustainability movement organizing
and protesting in locales around the world. The movement
is growing rapidly including such advancements as increased
awareness regarding global heating in the United States.
But this bright green movement could be bigger and do
Yes the threats are as grave as I have
written, but I have new found optimism and hope. We must
as a global society strive with all haste to better understand
global ecological change science as well as basic biological
science, and then based upon these and a new found humanity
in international relations, identify and achieve the global
policies necessary to actually achieve
reasonable expectations of global ecological sustainability
over the next several hundred years. This will require
big ideas and societal changes, not feel good half measures
that continue an era of grotesque wastefulness and highly
damaging over-consumption by some.
I do not disavow the earlier apocalyptic,
deeply negative writings which were largely based upon
deep ecology, conservation biology and landscape ecology
principles; and what has been termed "limits to growth"
arguments. They are truth.
But it is time in these writings to
move on to further mobilize to solve the issues at hand,
taking a craps shoot at saving the human race, while continuing
from time to time to update the threats regarding ecological
disintegration without wallowing in them. Let's take it
as an assumption that the Earth system is
collapsing and may for all intents and purposes "die"
because of human carelessness and unless there is dramatic
widespread personal change.
Tremendous opportunities are to be found
for more fulfilling lives and new ways to make righteous
livelihoods that not only do not harm but actually restore
the Earth. Economic activities must limit their use of
resources to the annual growth
increment, while working forever to restore natural capital.
You have the power to cut your greenhouse
gas emissions, live more simply and fully, while not buying
timbers from ancient forests (certified or otherwise).
Get closer to the land. Plant and care for trees and Gaia.
Become carbon neutral or negative. Live and work in your
mind and nature, not industry and the over-built air-conditioned
By doing so you are working to rebuild
the World's biosphere and living as an integral part of
Gaia's creation. You could choose to worship Gaia and
the Earth. As you live with the land practicing permaculture,
ecological restoration and sustainable agriculture; you
will be better positioned to weather any
possible coming die off and/or societal collapse, ecologically
or otherwise caused.
The quest for global ecological
sustainability is the challenge and hope for all humanity's
remaining time. It all depends upon you.