In his latest article titled, Putin’s Invasion Reminds Us That We Live In A Finite World, Jeremy Grantham discusses the impact of all key commodities required by the modern economy being finite in supply. Here’s an excerpt from the article:
Spaceship Earth, together with its local galaxies, is speeding through our part of the universe at over 600 miles per second. The good news is that no Klingon battle cruisers have yet appeared. The bad news is that there are no space stations that we can stop at for repairs and supplies.
We have only the limited resources that we carry with us. Some of these can be recycled, but many, including metals and fossil fuels, once used cannot be reconstituted and often become damaging waste. Our natural habitat on Spaceship Earth is incredibly complex but almost perfectly suited to our species. It is, though, extremely sensitive to misuse and has been easily and substantially damaged.
Our spaceship, like every spaceship, has a limited carrying capacity for not only resources but also the people using them. A challenge to our particular spaceship is that on our bridge there is no commander and there are no rules.
Our species, as it learned to survive over millennia, has adopted a style of “get what you need now by any means possible!” There has been no incentive to worry about the distant future, and so we don’t.
Our current attitude has been described by Kenneth Boulding as “cowboy economics,” driven by the spirit of the limitless frontier, where we shoot (or drill) first and ask about consequences later. Regrettably this natural response must change, and change fast, for finally after a few hundred thousand years we are approaching our limits to physical growth.
Perhaps we are already into our last doubling in resource use, having doubled many, many times before. We must now make the jump to full sustainability, or Spaceship Earth as a haven for our species will come to a sticky end.
You can read the entire article here:
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