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Technology and the Intelligence of Nature

Technology and the Intelligence of Nature | The Next Edge | Scoop.it
Charles Eisenstein shares his concerns about how pervasive the 'technology will fix it' mentality has become, and proposes an entirely different approach to healing our current ecological and social crises.

 

"In the United States, we respond to the failure of metal detectors, lockdowns, and other forms of control in our schools by calling for even more control. European countries unable to pay their debts are lent even more money, with the proviso that they try even harder to pay their debts. Imperialist powers apply military violence to fight the terrorism that is a response to previous imperialism and violence. Doctors prescribe drugs to address the side-effects caused by other drugs. Urban planners address traffic congestion by building more roads (which leads to more development and more traffic). And millions of people manage the emptiness of a life of material acquisition by buying more material possessions."

...

"Technology in service to Earth includes things like regenerative agriculture and permaculture to heal the soil, replenish the aquifers, and sequester carbon. It includes green energy technologies, conservation technologies, bioremediation, wetlands restoration, zero-waste manufacturing, anything that contributes to the health of the planet and its ecosystems."

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How Can We Make Green An Identity?

How Can We Make Green An Identity? | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Dan McAdams, a narrative psychologist at Northwestern University, studies the personal life stories of people. His research shows that our personal identities do not come from personality traits or the issues that concern us at any particular time in our lives. Our identities come from the stories we tell (often unconsciously) that bring the episodes of life together into a coherent unity. These stories incorporate our concerns and express our interpretations of inherited dispositions (e.g. outgoing and sociable), but do not become an identity until they are brought together into a narrative.


This is where we can begin to think about the cultivation of ‘green’ identity. It has to do with the stories we tell ourselves about how we relate to our communities, purchases, nature, and so on.


A major obstacle to the environmental movement has been the use of stories to discredit environmental concerns. A heavily funded series of campaigns have been waged to paint environmentalists with negative stereotypes.


via Joe Brewer

Cognitive Policy Works

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George Monbiot – The Mendacity of Hope

George Monbiot – The Mendacity of Hope | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

This week’s earth summit in Rio de Janeiro is a ghost of the glad, confident meeting 20 years ago. By now, the leaders who gathered in the same city in 1992 told us, the world’s environmental problems were to have been solved. But all they have generated is more meetings, which will continue until the delegates, surrounded by rising waters, have eaten the last rare dove, exquisitely presented with an olive leaf roulade. The biosphere, that world leaders promised to protect, is in a far worse state than it was 20 years ago(1). Is it not time to recognise that they have failed?

 

These summits have failed for the same reason that the banks have failed. Political systems which were supposed to represent everyone now return governments of millionaires, financed by and acting on behalf of billionaires. The past 20 years have been a billionaires’ banquet. At the behest of corporations and the ultra-rich, governments have removed the constraining decencies – the laws and regulations – which prevent one person from destroying another. To expect governments funded and appointed by this class to protect the biosphere and defend the poor is like expecting a lion to live on gazpacho.

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Rio+20: This is not the 'future we want' – Bolivian social movement response to UN draft agreement

Rio+20: This is not the 'future we want' – Bolivian social movement response to UN draft agreement | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

"It is wrong to assume that deepening the neoliberal model via a green economy will simultaneously lead to sustainable economic development, the eradication of poverty and the maintenance and management of ecosystems. As peoples of the world we know this is the same neoliberal model – even more inhuman – that will exacerbate social inequalities that have destroyed and harmed Mother Earth and nature."

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Occupy Rio+20: OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING

Occupy Rio+20: OPEN SOURCE EVERYTHING | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

What does Open Source Everything mean to the UN?: Principle 10 of the Rio Declaration on Sustainable Development (RDSD) empowers The 99% with deep participation in the United Nations:

 

ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES ARE BEST HANDLED WITH THE PARTICIPATION OF ALL CONCERNED CITIZENS, AT THE RELEVANT LEVEL... EACH INDIVIDUAL SHALL HAVE APPROPRIATE ACCESS TO INFORMATION CONCERNING THE ENVIRONMENT THAT IS HELD BY PUBLIC AUTHORITIES...

 

Since the last Earth Summit, humanity has mastered the open communications systems, information technology and software to enable global collaboration, participation and innovation. As Marshall McLuhan predicted, today's living generations are birthing one of the greatest social transformations in history — the shift from the Industrial Age to the Age of Shared Wisdom and Innovation. The Internet and associated technologies form an evolutionary system for the human race, encompassing the tools and diverse traditions to harness a holistic and resilient approach to build future civilization.

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The Weather Gods

The Weather Gods | The Next Edge | Scoop.it
Greenpeace shows the true face of the problem in "The Weather Gods", a hard-hitting documentary that tells the story of the people in the front line of climate change; rural communities in Mali and Kenya and South Africa.
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Forget GDP And Start Measuring Inclusive Wealth

Forget GDP And Start Measuring Inclusive Wealth | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

... GDP is not the be all and end all of economic success. There are other ways to measure the progress of a society. One way to think about economies is as the aggregate of three sorts of capital: physical (infrastructure and the means of production), human (skills and education) and natural capital. While the first two are renewable (some argue inexhaustible), natural resources such as fossil fuels, soil, biodiversity, and even forests may be depleted, sometimes permanently.

 

The Inclusive Wealth Indicator, which is scheduled to launch later this year, captures economic growth as the aggregate of a country’s wealth including its natural resources. "Our goal is to provide national governments with a bi-annual report to assess transition to the so-called green economy, to create productive and sustainable economic bases for the future," says Anantha Duraiappah, executive director of UNU-IHDP in a release.

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Indian Elder Speaks - Point of No Return

Indian elder, Oren Lyons, speaks of the path we are on and the upcoming point of no return we are collectively approaching. ***Copyright Disclaimer Under Sec...
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Joe Brewer: An interdisciplinary approach to understanding complex issues

Joe Brewer: An interdisciplinary approach to understanding complex issues | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Seattle based JOE BREWER is one amongst a rare and emerging breed of interdisciplinary experts around the world. In an era of specialisations, what’s missing is a holistic view that cuts across various discipines, whether it comes to addressing climate change or societal change. Brewer steps in with his unique perspectives on ‘cognitive policy.’ As Founder and Director of Cognitive Policy Works, he paints a sweeping and fascinating canvas covering the human mind, human behaviour, public policy, social media and societal change.

 

By Bhavani Prakash

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TechCrunch | Sugar Water

TechCrunch | Sugar Water | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Almost none of the stuff on the radar of the silicon valley echo-chamber is innovative or solves any real human needs. They won't cure anyone of disease, feed a child, improve the environment, or radically improve manufacturing...

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Nature’s Knack | TEDtalk | The Next Edge

Nature’s Knack | TEDtalk | The Next Edge | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Take 18 minutes of your day to watch this TEDtalk.
 

"If you haven’t heard about Janine Benyus, it’s about time you have. Janine has been at the forefront of biomimicry for a number of years now. She co-founded the Biomimicry Institute, which has morphed into various projects, including its current form as Biomimcry 3.8, a global network of scientists, thinkers, and consultants working together and learning from nature in order to solve humanity’s biggest challenges.

 

This TED talk is from Oxford in 2009, in which Janine gives examples of nature’s uncanny ability to perform complex tasks seamlessly and effortlessly. My favorite example, among many, is the Namibian Desert beetle’s evolutionary ability to collect water molecules from fog and turn it into drinking water for sustenance."

 

by Zack Hirschfeld

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Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist | Orion Magazine

Confessions of a Recovering Environmentalist | Orion Magazine | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

"I became an “environmentalist” because of a strong emotional reaction to wild places and the other-than-human world: to beech trees and hedgerows and pounding waterfalls, to songbirds and sunsets, to the flying fish in the Java Sea and the canopy of the rainforest at dusk when the gibbons come to the waterside to feed. From that reaction came a feeling, which became a series of thoughts: that such things are precious for their own sake, that they are food for the human soul, and that they need people to speak for them to, and defend them from, other people, because they cannot speak our language and we have forgotten how to speak theirs. And because we are killing them to feed ourselves and we know it and we care about it, sometimes, but we do it anyway because we are hungry, or we have persuaded ourselves that we are."

 

by Paul Kingsnorth

ht @DavePollard

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About us | Global Transition 2012

About us | Global Transition 2012 | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

"The Global Transition 2012 is an international network of organisations and leading thinkers from the Global North and South.

 

It is catalysing a ‘Global Transition’ by building a community of civil society organisations across the globe to promote and deliver a rapid transition to the desirable and beneficial economy that we aspire to.

 

The ultimate vision of the initiative is an alternative global green economy that maximises well-being, operates within environmental limits and is capable of coping and adapting to global environmental change."

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Part of Nature cartoon by Stuart McMillen - Recombinant Records

Part of Nature cartoon by Stuart McMillen - Recombinant Records | The Next Edge | Scoop.it
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Reforest Patagonia

Last December, a devastating man-made fire burned over 43,000 acres in the iconic Torres del Paine National Park. Since then, the Chile-based non-profit initiative, has been working to restore the ecosystem to its former glory. Among other things, they decided to leverage love for social media games into real world action. Through this creative campaign, Reforest Patagonia recently achieved their first 100,000 tree milestone, and is well on its way to the goal of one million planted trees by 2013.


The campaign incorporates social media, GPS technology, and the power of crowdfunding to compel people to get involved with the reforestation effort. The first level of participation is simple: donate $4, and Reforest Patagonia will plant a native-species tree (species: lenga, ñirre, and coigüe) in your name. Donors also receive an official certificate of its authenticity with the tree’s exact GPS coordinates, allowing for the tree to be seen via Google Maps from anywhere in the world.


The second level of participation is for those who want to mobilize their online networks for a bigger impact. Groups can use the “Create Your Own Forest” gaming feature to compete for the highest tree count among organizations in similar categories. There are prizes for groups who successfully “plant” the largest forest.


by Beth Buczynski | earthtechling.com

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VOID MIRROR: "Digital Culture and Sustainability" by Michel Bauwens

VOID MIRROR: "Digital Culture and Sustainability" by Michel Bauwens | The Next Edge | Scoop.it
The Rio+20 mandate recognizes three pillars of sustainable development – the economic, the social and the environmental. However, the process does not challenge the fundamental toxicity of the current operating system, and ignores that such a ‘faulty’ DNA has strong culture roots.

Via jean lievens, P2P Foundation
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What is environmental crime?

EIA believes in a future where humanity respects, protects and celebrates the natural world for the benefit of all life on the planet.

 

Ecosystems & Biodiversity
Environmental Crime and Governance
Global Climate

 

http://www.eia-international.org/

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Ecocide Youth Blast Video

This video is being presented at Youth Blast at the Rio Earth Summit on behalf of the Eradicating Ecocide campaign. The aim is to inspire and intrigue young people to help make ecocide an international crime.

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Fourth Sector | Imagine Rural Development Initiative

Fourth Sector | Imagine Rural Development Initiative | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Something’s definitely going on, because over the past ten years the boundaries between what is public (district, state, national), what is private (companies), and what belongs to voluntary organisations (non-profit) have become less and less distinct. Parallel to which the contours of an entirely new social arena have started to emerge – which Europe has been the first to dub the “for-benefit ” or “fourth” sector.

 

A sector populated by organisations, institutions and companies that are characterised by being self-financing – i.e. they operate on the free market – but who, on top of the bottom line, want to be measured and judged on the level of their social, ethical and environmental sense of responsibility.

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Maybe Just Maybe | Imagine Rural Development Initiative

Maybe Just Maybe | Imagine Rural Development Initiative | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

As a species we are stumbling blindly due to a model of separation based on nationality with no coherent system of monitoring or design. We are engaged in economic and political power-play, a fight for unsustainable resources, a religious war rearing its head between Islam and Christianity and to top it all off have done more damage to the biosphere in the last 10 years than in the whole history of humanity. We are waging wars on the trivial and sometimes I wonder if it is a self protection mechanism to prevent us from seeing the truth that is staring us right in the face at this moment of human history.

 

The facts are clear, we as a species have created a situation where we have to stop, stop to think, stop to address the major issues that can and are potentially affecting us as a species. This is a very small planet indeed, we as individuals tent to look at it from our personal perspective that stretch about as far as we can see, and for the ones being a little more engaged as far as our national interest lies. This small perspective of a “large planet” can and might be the undoing of a sustainable abundant planet for our future generation.

 

by @stevenputter

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The Future Of Retro: Captain Planet And The Power Of Social Media

The Future Of Retro: Captain Planet And The Power Of Social Media | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

... was it possible that the world’s first eco-superhero could still have a growing fan base 15 years after he went off the air? To find out, I asked Barbara Pyle, executive producer and co-creator of the award-winning TV series with Ted Turner.

 

“Anything is possible with the Planeteer Movement!” exclaims Pyle, with her signature burst of infectious enthusiasm.

 

Q: So what is this Planeteer Movement? I don’t recall that being part of the TV series.

 

A: Young adults who call themselves Planeteers for real have networked themselves together using social media. The brand and message of Captain Planet are very much alive and more relevant than ever for the millennial generation. Today, the Planeteer Movement’s Captain Planet Facebook page has well over half a million fans, with 60% in the 18-24 range, and another 30% in the 25-34. That kind of advocacy and brand loyalty is something you can’t buy.

 

ht @CaptainCalliope

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The law of Ecocide

The law of Ecocide | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

We can change the rules of the game, after-all that is all that law is, rules of the game of life. Instead of placing profit without consequence first we can put people and planet first. How can we do that, you ask? We create a new law that supersedes all other laws - we create an international law - a law that prohibits investment, policy and business that arises out of mass damage and destruction.

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NASA's Maps of US Trees Will Be a "Before" Picture for Deforestation

NASA's Maps of US Trees Will Be a "Before" Picture for Deforestation | The Next Edge | Scoop.it
NASA has created a map of the all the trees in the United States to serve as an inventory and provide a "before" picture for climate change...

Via Flora Moon
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The Blood of the Earth, or Pulp Nonfiction

The Blood of the Earth, or Pulp Nonfiction | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

Our core narrative, the story into which every serious thinker is required to fit his or her thoughts, is the narrative of progress—the story that defines all of human existence as a single great upward trajectory from the caves to the stars, and insists that the present is better than the past and the future will inevitably be better still. The problem with that narrative, of course, is that for most people the present is significantly worse than the past—standards of living for most Americans, for example, have been declining for more than thirty years—and the future promises to be even worse than the present. The narrative of progress has no room for that perception; in public life, the only way in which it’s possible to bring it up at all is to suggest that someone or something is to blame for the temporary lack of progress, and then offer a plan to get the obstacle out of the way so that progress can get under way once more.


Via James Burns
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Re-imagining our Consumer Culture | The Next Edge

Re-imagining our Consumer Culture | The Next Edge | The Next Edge | Scoop.it

"Often in our consumer state of mind, we neglect to consider what waste goes into creating the products we consume, and then throw away. In recent years, through recycling, composting, and conservation initiatives, we have done a good job of considering the post-consumer side, but not the pre-consumer side of waste. What goes into our products is often more harmful than what happens to them post-use. We waste so many resources (both environmental and human) in the production process. Many of the issues we know about. However, when the product is ready for our consumption, we often become blind to its production."

 

by Zack Hirschfeld

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