Brainy Quote of the Day

Friday, May 31, 2013

Overdrawn Account...

Yeah, right
Call me selfish...

Today, an asteroid the size of the one that destroyed the dinosaurs (with its own moon, no less) will pass by our planet harmlessly, illustrating the need to increase STEM knowledge prolifically such that we can deal with the "shooting gallery" that is our solar system. In half a century of living, reading, thinking and breathing, I've become rather fond of the rock we're on, and have no interest in becoming "smooth skinned dinosaurs" for the fossil comsumption of the next sentient species (or in the case of Mars, rust).

So, it's smart, I think to encourage kids in STEM versus sports; critical thinking versus flexing and postering; building things of collective value versus just acquiring wealth for its own sake, and the avarice/self-centeredness that it typically encourages (I admit, it does not always).

A really good question: if the projections of these articles are correct, we've got seventeen years until 2030 - what then? Then tipping points in global warming won't matter; the Census population of the US in 2042 won't matter; your favorite bloviating, over-the-top, education-of-a-flea, pseudo science, know-nothing-at-all-but-soak-your-fears-for-cash talk radio host won't matter; how much you have in the bank, who you think should run the country in the 2032 election won't matter.

Until someone develops new sources of energy, Solar Sails, Warp Drive or a migration plan, we won't have many options on humanity's table...

The over-use and pollution of Earth's natural resources have become so extreme that, at current rates, a second planet will be needed by 2030 to meet the world's needs, a new report warns.

The planet's 6.8 billion people were living 50% beyond Earth's sustainable means in 2007, the latest year for which figures are available, according to the biannual "Living Planet" report by WWF, a conservation group previously known as the World Wildlife Fund.

"Even with modest U.N. projections for population growth, consumption and climate change, by 2030 humanity will need the capacity of two Earths to absorb CO2 waste and keep up with natural resource consumption," the report says, adding that four and a half planets would be needed if everyone used as many resources as the average American.


Humans are using resources at such a pace they need another world to meet demand for land to grow crops and forests and raise animals, WWF International said.

People required 18.2 billion hectares (45 billion acres) of land by 2008, with 12 billion productive hectares available, WWF said today in its biennial Living Planet report. About 55 percent of land needed was for forest to absorb carbon dioxide emissions. The Earth takes one and a half years to regenerate natural resources used annually by human inhabitants, WWF said.

“We are living as if we have an extra planet at our disposal,” WWF International Director General Jim Leape said in the report. “We are using 50 percent more resources than the Earth can provide, and unless we change course that number will grow very fast. By 2030, even two planets will not be enough.”

1. USA Today: Second Earth Will Soon Be Needed
2. Bloomberg: Another Earth Needed to Meet Humans' Demand for Resources

No comments:

Post a Comment