Monday, December 31, 2007

Ecocide Overshadows Nuclear War?

Ecocide Overshadows Nuclear War? My wife gave me the book "Collapse" by Jared Diamond which is a New York Times Best Seller in the Non-fiction category. I'd like to quote from page 7 and then page 6 of the book.

Begin quote page 7 near top of page, "The risk of such collapses today is now a matter of increasing concern:indeed, collapses have already materialized for Somalia,Rwanda, and some other Third World countries. Many people fear ecocide has now come to overshadow nuclear war and emerging diseases as a threat to global civilization. The environmental problems facing us today include the same eight that undermined past societies, plus four new ones:human-caused climate change, buildup of toxic chemicals in the environment, energy shortages, and full human utilization of the Earth's photosynthetic capacity. Most of these 12 threats, it is claimed, will become globally critical within the next few decades:either we solve the problems by then or the problems will undermine not just Somalia but also First World Societies." end quote.

The first 8 causes of collapse of societies and cultures are given in the next quote on page 6 near the top, begin quote, "The processes through which past societies have undermined themselves by damaging their environments fall into eight categories, whose relative importance differs from case to case:deforestation and habitat destruction, soil problems (erosion, salinization, and soil fertility losses), water management problems, overhunting, overfishing, effects of introduced species on native species, human population growth, and increased percapita impact of people." end quote.

I visited a friend who has a master's degree from UCLA about 1 month ago. He was reading this book and I asked him about it. After that, I decided it would be useful to read this book as well.

I would like to read a comment by Business Week about this book,"A magisterial effort packed with insight and written with clarity and enthusiasm. It's also the deal of the year--the equivalent of a college course by an engaging, brilliant professor, all for the price of a book."

The more people who understand the process of collapse of a civilization as the ecosystem collapses, the more likely that at least the educated people of the earth can try to popularize their ideas so the common people can understand the effects of what they are doing every day do to their future and the future of their children. Through education comes personal responsibility. I don't really believe that governments can really solve the problems now facing all life on earth. But I also believe that with useful information humans can begin to find ways to solve the problems of the imminent ecological collapse of our Earth Civilization during the next few decades or centuries depending entirely upon what 6 billion people do individually. Without each person on earth taking personal responsibility there will eventually be no ecosystem for any life on earth except for maybe a few bacteria and insects like cockroaches.

No comments: