Thursday, November 15, 2007

After we are gone...

Okay, this is just fascinating. While it seems unlikely that the human species will ever disappear suddenly and cataclysmically, it is very interesting to consider how the earth would (slowly) recover from our presence. Check out the graphical time trend based on the book by Alan Weisman. What is so amazing about the lingering effects of humanity is that almost all of the long term negative impacts are from the last 100 years alone! It is just crazy how quickly we have degraded the earth, when you consider that humans have been around for over 3000 years and for the most part lived in cooperation with the environment. In just three generations we are facing major environmental crisis, including deforestation, global warming, air and water pollution, extinction of animal and plant species, etc.

I am not trying to be a doomsayer, indeed, I find that overly negative thinking is paralyzing and ultimate not productive. Rather, I think that if we could get ourselves into this mess so quickly, there is no reason we can't turn things around rapidly, if we get enough people committed to significant change.