By Dr. Glen Barry
After 25 years of ecological advocacy, I can say with certainty that I have never seen as much genuine environmental concern as I do now. This has generally not led en masse to required action such as personal dramatic emission cuts and refusal to buy all products from old-growth forests. But for the first time ecological decline including climate change is visibly apparent to a degree that it is readily known by the educated and it can't be denied by anyone of good faith and character.
Concurrently trend lines for atmospheric and ecosystem decline are more perilous than ever. Humanity is putting the biosphere at great risk, as rampant industrial pollution and clearing of natural vegetation results in abrupt climate change occurring far faster than envisioned, and natural ecosystems are failing to provide the surrounding matrix of natural services which makes life possible. The natural family's only hope is that an ecological inflection point occurs, whereby the impacts of biosphere collapse become so evident – perhaps as millions die from extreme storms and other depredations – while there is still time to implement sufficient solutions. At that point the human family will howl for the necessary measures to be taken to protect and restore natural ecosystems, and end fossil fuels, on an accelerated emergency basis.
The only questions are whether as ecosystem collapse becoming apparent, will we squabble for what remains as we deny ecologism, or will we remain free as we begin in earnest a great transition to green liberty? And will we have identified and prototyped, and be ready with sufficient ecological solutions, to meet human needs while maintaining a living Earth? The ecological inflection point is a narrow band of opportunity to repair fragmented, quivering nature before it is too late. We must be ready with templates for ecological sustainability, which can employ billions, as a program of ecological restoration and energy conservation are rapidly scaled.
What hope remains for humanity and her habitat as ecological awareness and collapse converge in such a manner, is whether we are able to ramp up fast enough the plethora of ecological solutions we all know about but don't support enough. These efforts may be abetted by deep wells of global ecological resilience of which we are unaware, as the Earth is a living organism that has self-regulated for 3.5 billion year, yet whose workings remain largely unknown to her peoples.
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