Sunday, September 25, 2011

Overshoot


Just read a sobering article regarding the ability of man to overreach, not only in terms of finance and debt, courtesy of tech, the banks and the fed, but also in lack of intelligent resource management, something getting scarier by the moment as we move further into the 21st century.


"Humankind will slip next week into ecological debt, having gobbled up in less then nine months more natural resources than the planet can replenish in a year, researchers said Tuesday.


The most dominant species in Earth's history, in other words, is living beyond the planet's threshold of sustainability, trashing the house it lives in.


At its current pace of consumption humankind will need, by 2030, a second globe to satisfy its voracious appetites and absorb all its waste, the report calculated.


Earth's seven billion denizens -- nine billion by mid-century -- are using more water, cutting down more forests and eating more fish than Nature can replace, it said.


At the same time, we are disgorging more CO2, pollutants and chemical fertilizers than the atmosphere, soil and oceans can soak up without severely disrupting the ecosystems that have made our planet such a comfortable place for homo sapiens to live.


Counting down from January 1, the date when human activity exceeds its budget -- dubbed "Earth Overshoot Day" -- had receded by about three days each year since 2001.


The tipping point into non-sustainability happened sometime in the 1970s, said the Oakland, California-based Global Footprint Network, which issued the report.


This year, researchers estimate that the equivalent of Earth's resource quota will be depleted on September 27."

and that's not all.


"But as India, China and other emerging giants continue to grow their economies at breakneck pace -- fuelled in large part by the desire for a "Western" lifestyle -- that per-capita footprint will become much larger, scientists warn.


Already today, for example, China is the top emitter of greenhouse gases and the top producer of automobiles."

No doubt, technological solutions able to deal with this non-sustaialble lifestyle we find ourselves mired in are emerging from labs all over the wold but successful research does not equate to real world solutions given the time frames needed to 1: develop new manufacturing modalities to produce this new tech and 2: create innovative ways to finance same, something becoming all the more difficult given the momental fiscal malfeasance the banks (with governmental support) have perpetrated on the world with unprecedented speed and efficiency.

We are in trouble and we better do something about it because if we don't, the possibility of Earth becoming  a Giedi Prime looms ever larger, a prospect truly unsustainable if we want to remain a viable species residing on a tiny planet we call home.

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