Culture Collapse Disorder
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Culture Collapse Disorder
Culture Collapse Disorder
Culture Collapse Disorder: The loss & destruction of home (places & planet) due to human impact and our modern consumer mindset
Curated by Bonnie Bright
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Welcome to the Anthropocene

Welcome to the Anthropocene | Culture Collapse Disorder | Scoop.it

When I was a boy, we lived in the Holocene. That’s what the geologists called it, anyway, from the Greek words for  “entirely new.” The term was settled on in 1885 and defined as the geological epoch that followed the end of the Pleistocene about 12,000 years ago, after the retreat of the ice from the northern hemisphere, as the planet entered one of its periodic interglacial periods.  The Holocene, a relatively mild, even balmy, period, saw the rise of human civilization—indeed, all of recorded human history.  Bet we’ll miss it when it’s gone.

 

Almost two centuries after the beginning of the industrial revolution in Europe, an ecologist named Eugene F. Stoermer coined the word “anthropocene” to refer to the evidence of the human impact on the planet, an impact he judged to be on par with the great geological events of the past. The word means the “human new.” He started using the word in the early 1980s, but it didn’t catch on until 2000, when he and Paul Crutzen used the word in print for the first time.  While not officially adopted... (click title for more)

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Welcome to the Anthropocene

Welcome to the Anthropocene | Culture Collapse Disorder | Scoop.it
THE Earth is a big thing; if you divided it up evenly among its 7 billion inhabitants, they would get almost 1 trillion tonnes each. To think that the workings of so...

 

THE Earth is a big thing; if you divided it up evenly among its 7 billion inhabitants, they would get almost 1 trillion tonnes each. To think that the workings of so vast an entity could be lastingly changed by a species that has been scampering across its surface for less than 1% of 1% of its history seems, on the face of it, absurd. But it is not. Humans have become a force of nature reshaping the planet on a geological scale—but at a far-faster-than-geological speed.

 

A single engineering project, the Syncrude mine in the Athabasca tar sands, involves moving 30 billion tonnes of earth—twice the amount of sediment that flows down all the rivers in the world in a year. That sediment flow itself, meanwhile, is shrinking; almost 50,000 large dams have over the past half- century cut the flow by nearly a fifth. That is one reason why the Earth's deltas, home to hundreds of millions of people, are eroding away faster than they can be replenished.... (click title for more)

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A World Without Coral Reefs

A World Without Coral Reefs | Culture Collapse Disorder | Scoop.it
By persisting in the false belief that coral reefs have a future, we grossly misallocate the funds needed to cope with the fallout from their collapse.

 

IT’S past time to tell the truth about the state of the world’s coral reefs, the nurseries of tropical coastal fish stocks. They have become zombie ecosystems, neither dead nor truly alive in any functional sense, and on a trajectory to collapse within a human generation. There will be remnants here and there, but the global coral reef ecosystem — with its storehouse of biodiversity and fisheries supporting millions of the world’s poor — will cease to be.

 

Overfishing, ocean acidification and pollution are pushing coral reefs into oblivion. Each of those forces alone is fully capable of causing the global collapse of coral reefs; together, they assure it. The scientific evidence for this is compelling and unequivocal, but there seems to be a collective reluctance to accept the logical conclusion — that there is no hope of saving the global coral reef ecosystem...

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The Anthropocene: From Global Change to Planetary Stewardship

The Anthropocene: From Global Change to Planetary Stewardship | Culture Collapse Disorder | Scoop.it

Over the past century, the total material wealth of humanity has been enhanced. However, in the twenty-first century, we face scarcity in critical resources, the degradation of ecosystem services, and the erosion of the planet’s capability to absorb our wastes. Equity issues remain stubbornly difficult to solve.

 

This situation is novel in its speed, its global scale and its threat to the resilience of the Earth System. The advent of the Anthropence, the time interval in which human activities now rival global geophysical processes, suggests that we need to fundamentally alter our relationship with the planet we inhabit. Many approaches could be adopted, ranging from geo-engineering solutions that purposefully manipulate parts of the Earth System to becoming active stewards of our own life support system.

 

The Anthropocene is a reminder that the Holocene, during which complex human societies have developed, has been a stable, accommodating environment and is the only state of the Earth System that we know for sure can support contemporary society. The need to achieve effective planetary stewardship is urgent... (click title for more)

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Los Angeles Review of Books - Welcome to the Anthropocene by by David Biello

Los Angeles Review of Books - Welcome to the Anthropocene by  by David Biello | Culture Collapse Disorder | Scoop.it
A new literature for a new age, the 'Age of Man'

 

We move more earth and stone than all the world's rivers. We are changing the chemistry of the atmosphere all life breathes. We are on pace to eat to death half of the other life currently sharing the planet with us. There is nothing on Earth untouched by man — whether it be the soot from fossil fuels darkening polar snows or the very molecules incorporated into a tree trunk. Humanity has become a global force whose exploits will be written in rock for millennia.

 

We can think of our Anthropocene as a steam-punk thing, only as old as James Watt's invention of a practical coal-burning steam engine way back in 1776. Or we can see it stretch back millions of years to when early Homo sapiens may have driven large carnivores like sabre-tooth tigers to extinction. Still, nothing compares to the Atomic Age, which spread rare, long-lived elements across the planet — a unique human signature. And our mark will remain in the atmosphere for tens of thousands of years, elevated levels of carbon dioxide keeping the planet warmer than it would otherwise be. If people, plants or animals don't like the climate in 2100, 2500 or even 25000 they will have us to blame....(click title for more)

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