04 August 2009

124 Days to Copenhagen - Life Without Agriculture

I've discovered that some people who at least are thinking about the climate change emergency are perhaps thinking the wrong things.

Apparently there's a belief out there that we're going to end up back in a feudal system, whereby today's rich people become tomorrow's rich people, and the rest of us become peasants, serfs or slaves. Our toil (rather than oil) then becomes the engine of that feudal society.

The big problem with that prediction is that the feudal system was based on agriculture, but climate change is going to do away with agriculture. If we don't make the transformation to a renewable energy / zero carbon economy fast, then that climate stability that allowed civilizations to flourish (because of agricultural surpluses) will disappear, leaving us basically back in the stone age, if not gone.

The grim irony is that the deniers like to tell their audiences that we environmentalists would have us all living back in the stone age, when it's their foot dragging over at least two decades now that will lead to a climate holocaust and then a hunter-gatherer lifestyle for any that might remain.

It's the physics, folks, pure physics. We're still pumping more and more carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. They warm the atmosphere, heating up the surface of the planet, which includes the oceans. If we don't stop very soon and start going in reverse, this will mean disaster for agriculture, disaster for our food security, and disaster for our children's future.

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I would appreciate hearing your thoughts or questions on this post or anything else you've read here. What is your take on courage and compassion being an important part of the solution to the climate change emergency?