The global economy has
outgrown the capacity of the Earth to support it. Ecosytem collapse is
No culture, however
technologically advanced, can survive the collapse of its environmental
support system or ecosystem.
"Can we just realize that there are limits to
growth? That "smart growth", at best, delays the moment when we must concede
the limitations of a finite world? After observing the mindless expansion of
the Los Angeles region, predicated on a future of cheap energy that will not be
realized, I have to ask, are we smarter than a colony of bacteria that
reproduces and proliferates until it suddenly dies off from an exhaustion of
resources?" - David M. Marquez
"Imagine what happens to a culture when it becomes
based on the idea of transcending limits. . . and
enshrines that as the purpose of its near-global civilization. Predictably it
will live in the grip of the technological imperative, devoted unceasingly to
providing machinery to attack the possible. . . . Imagine then what happens to
a culture when it actually develops the means to transcend limits, making it
possible and therefore right to destroy custom and community, to create new
rules of employment and obligation, to magnify production and consumption, to
impose new means and ways of work, and to control or ignore the central forces
of nature. It would no doubt exist for quite a long time, powerful and
expansionary and prideful, before it had to face up to the truths that it was
founded upon an illusion and that there are real limits in an ordered world,
social and economic as well as natural, that ought not be transgressed, limits
more important than their conquest." - Kirkpatrick Sale Global consumer culture is
consuming renewable resources
faster than they can regenerate.
consumer culture consumes oil,
coal, natural gas and discharges
greenhouse gases into the
atmosphere faster than nature can recycle them.
The incapacity to satisfy global consumer culture
is apparent in:
and eroding soils;
crop-withering heat waves;
abandoned because of invading sand dunes;
ocean dead zones;
dying coral reefs;
dry and fracked into toxicity.
Harvests of less than 10 percent of historic
highs is considered a collapse in the Fishing industry.
only six commercial seafood species worldwide had collapsed. By 2003, more than
2,200 species - 29 percent of all commercially fished species on Earth - had
Resources accumulated over
eons of geological time are being consumed in a single human lifespan. Global
consumer culture notes problems only when commodity prices go up, leaving
little time to adjust. Once a
natural threshold is crossed there is no time left to modify our resource
explotation. We see this time and again as species go extinct.
MacCready notes that when agriculture began, humans, their livestock, and pets
together accounted for less than 0.1 percent of the total weight of all
vertebrates on the land and in the air. In 2005 Paul MacCready estimated that
humans, their livestock, and pets accounted for 98 percent of the Earth's total
vertebrate biomass, leaving only 2 percent for the wild portion, the latter
including all the deer, wildebeests, elephants, great cats, birds, small
mammals, and so forth.
98 tons of prehistoric, buried plant material is
required to produce each gallon of gasoline we burn in our cars. Fossil fuel
consumption in 1997 equaled the energy in 7.1 trillion kilograms of carbon in
plant matter. Land plants today contain 31.6 trillion kilograms of carbon above
"The amount of plants that went into the fossil fuels we burned
since the global industrial Revolution began in 1751 is equal to all the plants
grown on Earth over 13,300 years. Fossil fuels developed from ancient deposits
of organic material, and thus can be thought of as a vast store of solar
energy. It took an incredible amount of plant matter to generate the fossil
fuels we are using today." - Jeff Dukes
Many earlier civilizations found
themselves in environmental trouble as Jared Diamond notes in Collapse: How
Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed.
Some were able to change
course and avoid economic decline and some -
Sumerians, Mayans, Easter Islanders -
were not able to make the needed adjustments in time.
We know from
earlier civilizations that the lead indicators of economic decline were
environmental and not due to the churning
The trees went first, then
the soil, and finally the
Nature has many
thresholds that we discover
only when it is too late.
To archeologists, the sequence is all too
The Earth is in what
ecologists call an "overshoot-and-collapse"
Overshoot leads sometimes to decline and sometimes to a complete
1944 US Coast Guard introduces 29
reindeer on remote St. Matthew Island in the Bering Sea to serve as the backup
food source for the 19 men operating a station there. World War II ends, the
base is closed and the men left the island.
US Fish and Wildlife Service biologist David Kline visits St. Matthew
Island. He discovers a
thriving population of 1,350 reindeer feeding on the four-inch-thick mat of
lichen that covers the 332-square-kilometer (128-square-mile) island. In the
absence of any predators, the population exploded.
1963 A population of 6,000 reindeer on the island.
1966 St. Matthew Island is strewn with reindeer
skeletons and not much lichen. 42 reindeer survive: 41 females and 1 unhealthy male. There
are no fawns.
1980 The remaining reindeer had
died off and there is no lichen.
In decline, a remnant of the
population or economic activity survives in a resource-depleted
environment for a period of time.
As the environmental resource base of Easter Island in the South
Pacific deteriorated its population declined from a peak of 20,000 to fewer
In contrast, the 500-year-old Norse settlement in Greenland
collapsed during the 1400s, disappearing entirely in the face of environmental
2005 42 countries have population that
are stable or declining slightly in size as a result of falling birth rates.
For the first time demographers are
declines in African countries because of
death rates, among them Botswana, Lesotho, Namibia, and
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violence that is already occurring due to the international corporate cartels
desire to control the human race. The international corporate cartel already
controls the world economic system, corporate media worldwide, the global
industrial military entertainment complex and is responsible for the collapse
of morals, the elevation of self-centered behavior and the destruction of
global ecosystems. Civilization is based on cooperation. Cooperation does not
occur at the point of a gun.
American social mores and values have
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deceive the populace in general through corporate media by pressing emotional
buttons which have been preprogrammed into the population through prior mass
media psychological operations. The results have been the destruction of the
family and the destruction of social structures that do not adhere to the
corrupt international elites vision of a perfect
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bulk of the population has been directed toward solutions proposed by the
corrupt international elite that further consolidates their power and which
further their purposes.
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