Tag «die-off»

Linking the Past with the Present: Resources, Land Use, and the Collapse of Civilizations

We have ripped minerals from the Earth, often bringing down mountains in the process; we have harvested nearly all the old-growth timber on the continent, replacing thousand-year-old trees with neatly ordered plantations of small trees; we have hunted species to the point of extinction; we have driven livestock across every almost acre of the continent, baring hillsides and facilitating massive erosion; we have plowed large landscapes, transforming fertile soil into sterile, lifeless dirt; we have burned ecosystems and, perhaps more importantly, we have extinguished naturally occurring fires; we have paved thousands of acres to facilitate our movement and, in the process, have disrupted the movements of thousands of species; we have spewed pollution and dumped garbage, thereby dirtying our air, fouling our water, and contributing greatly to the warming of the planet. We have, to the maximum possible extent allowed by our intellect and never-ending desire, consumed the planet.

A matter of life and death

A collapse in the world’s industrial economy is producing the expected results, finally, too late to save thousands of species we’ve sent into the abyss, but perhaps barely in time to save a few remaining species, including our own. If you care about other species and cultures, or even the continued persistence of our own species, then you support our imminent return to the post-industrial stone age. Such a return saves the maximum number of human lives, over the long term.

What I hope for

Do I want to see it all come down? Personally, no. Like everybody else, I do not want to die young after suffering immensely. But I’m wise enough to see beyond myself, and empathetic enough to give a damn about other cultures and species, and even future generations of our own species.