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NASA-funded study: industrial civilization headed for 'irreversible collapse'?

RATE THIS! +31
Posted in Science on 16th Mar, 2014 11:43 PM by AlexMuller

A new study sponsored by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center has highlighted the prospect that global industrial civilisation could collapse in coming decades due to unsustainable resource exploitation and increasingly unequal wealth distribution.

 
Noting that warnings of 'collapse' are often seen to be fringe or controversial, the study attempts to make sense of compelling historical data showing that "the process of rise-and-collapse is actually a recurrent cycle found throughout history." Cases of severe civilisational disruption due to "precipitous collapse - often lasting centuries - have been quite common."
 
By investigating the human-nature dynamics of past cases of collapse, the project identifies the most salient interrelated factors which explain civilisational decline, and which may help determine the risk of collapse today: namely, Population, Climate, Water, Agriculture, and Energy.

Tags: NASAcivilizationcollapseenvironmentpollutionsustainability

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-17
+3
If indeed this study offers good evidence that our civilisation is moving towards an inevitable collapse, it would be good to know what can be done about it?
3 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-17
+3
Well, they did not say that the collapse is inevitable, they explained that "modelling a range of different scenarios" under conditions "closely reflecting the reality of the world today... we find that collapse is difficult to avoid." Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-17
+3
They mention two main features leading to collapse: the stretching of resources and the economic stratification of society into "Elites" and "Masses". They see "Elite" as irresponsible and the reason that "accumulated surplus is not evenly distributed throughout society, but rather has been controlled by an elite." - Interesting ideas
1 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-17
+0
Yes, they also see Elite as an obstacle in avoiding the collapse. "While some members of society might raise the alarm that the system is moving towards an impending collapse and therefore advocate structural changes to society in order to avoid it, Elites and their supporters, who opposed making these changes, could point to the long sustainable trajectory 'so far' in support of doing nothing." Reply
Reply


 

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