Our Environmental Dilemma – Past, Present, Future… (Part 2)

In this 2017 UCT Summer School Series, Dr Peter Ardington (BVSc SAVC) presents on “A Green Future for the World ~ Part 2.”

This two-part presentation explores and analyses the environmentally negative influence of people from the emergence of our species, between 200,000 and 400,000 years ago, up to the present.

In this presentation, Peter Ardington talks on the need for a slow, steady and rational Environmental Revolution over the next 12,000 year period and how progress in this arena is being impeded and slowed by people and technological issues globally.
From the people perspective – a conspicuous consumption lifestyle that so many people want these days, referred to by some social commentators as, “the modern disease of affluenza” with another definition citing it as “a modern disease in which people believe that having too much is still never enough”! – not a particularly good situation for the environment.
In terms of present biomass comparisons on this planet, a good indicator as to just how out of balance we are with the other important forms of life, i.e. Current Human mass – 300 million tonnes – Domestic animal mass – 600 million tonnes and wild large mammal mass (>50kg) – 100 million tonnes.

For an Environmental Revolution to happen, some revolutionary goals would be required in terms of biodiversity and bio-abundance to sustain ecosystem services, i.e. fresh air, clean water, fertile building soil, healthy abundant food including resources for mass middle class prosperity like energy, transport, building materials, etc., including the necessary social, economic, cultural and spiritual changes that need to be made over the next twelve thousand years to reach these goals.
In terms of the Spiritual aspect, for most of history, religions have focused on society, human relations, economics, material wealth, possessions and godliness with very little emphasis over the centuries on the environment, and little being written or spoken about our custodianship of the natural world by middle Eastern religions, Christianity or Islam, despite the writings of Plato and civilisations coming into being and collapsing for thousands of years.

Watch further.. on this presentation about Agricultural practices in countries like USA, Australia, etc. who are bringing the animal factor back to the land, Technology as an environmental lover – not rapist and Democracy, Slaves and Women over the years.

Too Many People – Too Much Consumption
South African Veterinary Council 
Summer School, UCT 

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