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Media Type: Video
Date of Publication: October 9, 2016
Year of Publication: 2016
Publication City: Santa Barbara, CA
Publisher: UC Santa Barbara, Environmental Humanities Initiative
Author(s): Erik Assadourian
“Nearly a half century after Dana Meadows, Edward Goldsmith, Paul Ehrlich, and other environmental prophets first warned about the need to shift to a sustainable future, we are further from that goal than ever before. Is there still time to make a gentle transition to a sustainable civilization—even now that we have twice the population, the global economy is five times larger, and two-thirds of Earth’s ecosystems are degraded or being used unsustainably?
“The research suggests that no matter how fast we now act, there will be horrific changes that we’ll need to deal with in our future. But even if an ‘ecological collapse’ occurs, it is important to remember that the collapse in all likelihood is not the end. There have been dark ages in the past. The question is how we navigate through this time in a way that minimizes suffering both to people and the planet, and set ourselves up on a path where an ecocentric civilization can emerge on the other side. In this presentation I will argue that the best available strategy is to follow the model of those movements that have lasted thousands of years—able to evolve across great cultural, geographical, and temporal variations—and create an ecomissionary philosophical movement that can steer us through the turbulent centuries ahead. Presented as part of The World in 2050 Conference.”
For more on this topic, please read: Building an Enduring Environmental Movement.
The World in 2050 Conference, organized by the University of California Santa Barbara’s Environmental Humanities Initiative, is taking place from October 24 to November 14, 2016.
Aiming to limit the conference’s carbon footprint, conference talks and Q&A sessions are all digital. This reduces the need for travel and makes content easily accessible! You can register to participate in the Q&A sessions here.