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Will I be very cynical if I suggest that our civilisation is not mature enough to master its own success and consequences thereof?

Of course, we still have right to try to stop ourselves and fix it - and we must do it indeed. Nevertheless, if predictions of "committed climate damage" are true, if the present CO2 levels are bound to affect the climate for centuries, if we cannot even start reducing the growth of our CO2 emissions - and I am not certain that we cannot, and I am not certain that the Earth would ignore an intelligent signal of reduced emissions - even with worst development we should accept calmly the fact that continuous and sustained survival of intelligent primates is not a given.

I think our main problem is not technological revolution, but relative lack of social and moral progress. With greedy expansion habits that we have - and we have to say, the West showed all the way - we would have breached nature limits sooner or later anyway, even with much less technological progress. Our collective priority is still letting the most flourishing individuals to get anything they can reach, no matter the effects and future prospects - just like at the time of pharaohs. We might have deserved some practical armageddon.

If worst developments are bound to happen, what we will have is another geological extintion event, and a new geological era - that is not new for the Earth. She might be even "skillful" in assisting a global transformation in a canny way. A small proportion of humans must be able to survive here and there - we would be lucky if the right lesson would be preserved until the next boom millenia later.

by das monde on Sun Jul 16th, 2006 at 08:51:58 PM EST
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