At (or Past) Our Peak

Dusk in Middle Earth
Dusk in Middle Earth (Photo credit: fred1st)

Given, that we are up against physical restraints and limits globally in a way never before seen until the Anthropocene–the geological epoch of mankind’s impact on every biome on Earth–it seems clear to some and a hoax to others that we cannot continue to do business as usual.

We still have choices with regard to some of these “boundaries”, while some have already been transgressed, and for those, it will be our children, generations hence, who will have to bring them back into balance and sustainable limits if life of any reasonable quality is to go on.

This Bloomberg site aggregates stories of a number of issues related to tipping points and how to deal with them.

I see this is as a first stop in an essay I’d love to pull together that ends with the fact that economics students are beginning to reject neoclassical economics; that the idea of “triple bottom line” economics is gaining traction; and that eco-economics is one of the heterodox economic models finally looming prominently in our rethink of tomorrow’s world. There is hope for our species, yet–in spite of having pushed far to close to the edge of the cliff.

Bear in mind that, though the Anthropocene can mean that man’s activities will have significant impact every living system on Earth, it also means that our species has ahead of it an incredible opportunity to change the world for good. Poised at the peak, a boulder can roll either way. Our generation will decide which.

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Published by fred

Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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1 Comment

  1. The change in economic thinking is crucial and very exciting. All my environmental magazines are reporting good news along this line. There is hope now that the bean counters will be on the side of preserving the environment.

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