Oh Dear There’s an Asteroid Heading Our Way…..

…but let’s not worry about that yet, say the crowd in the pub.

An asteroid might or might not slam into Earth, but there are more immediate dangers to understand. Richard Heinberg — link below — argues that we must build more resilience into our straining, breaking systems — environmental, social, political, economic…  In ‘Fingers in the dike’ on http://www.resilience.org, Richard Heinberg looks at the unpleasant interactions between energy, money and climate systems:

http://www.resilience.org/stories/2013-10-01/fingers-in-the-dike?utm_content=buffer1ffcb&utm_source=buffer&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Buffer

The ways that we compartmentalise and certificate knowledge are, I think, partly to blame for the difficulty we have in visualising our world as a complex adaptive system in which the linkages between component parts are as critical as the parts themselves. The people who analyse the functioning of broad systems, across the boundaries of traditional ‘subjects’ are often on the receiving end of academic and political marginalisation, sadly.

The Sustainable Development Commission had a greenwash type of name but, led by Jonathon Porritt, it acted as a subtle ecological conscience for the United Kingdom.  It was an advisory link between government departments, and a reminder that systems do not stop at the exits of ministerial domains.

The commission was abolished by the Conservative/Liberal Democrat government in 2010. In fact, axing the commission was one of this government’s early acts, although the British people were told it would be the “greenest government ever”, a misleading statement which adds to the widespread distrust of politicians, and to apathy.

Both Richard Heinberg and Gail Tverberg (what is it about the bergs?) see clearly how systems form interacting hierarchies that should not be analysed solely in isolation from each other. Gradually the power of their arguments is gaining support from green-minded people.

Pat Dodd Racher

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