Environment And Social Equality Essay


Environment and Social Equality The modern world and all of its technological progress has led to a situation in which many individuals become detached from its reliance on the knowledge of natural systems to provide for themselves and their families. Yet they are entirely dependent on the natural systems that provide things such as food, water, and clean air; it's just that they are rather unaware of how these systems are integrated with their lives. Whereas once individuals had to hunt, gather, farm, or raise livestock for their sustenance, now people can simple just travel to the grocery store and purchase nearly anything they desire.

The modern environment has created a circumstance in which people take for granted the technologies, man-made systems, and natural systems that all work to provide for them. As James Burke points out in his documentary, Connections: The Trigger Effect, it is actually impossible for individuals to understand all of these systems due to the fact that there are so many different systems that have such a level of sophistication that there literally is not enough time to fully understand the workings of each one. Thus it is absolutely essential that we take most of these systems for granted on a daily basis simply to navigate in a modern society.

However, there are many consequences that occur when a majority of the population is forced to accept the benevolence of their systems on faith of human progress. One artist has found that photography can be a useful tool in illustrating some of the ways that the global landscape has changed....


Edward Burtynsky has travel the world taking pictures of some of the most awe inspiring industrial changes to the landscape that have occurred throughout the industrial developments that grown exponentially crossed the planet. His works generally point out some of the consequences of development on natural systems that make viewers question some of their beliefs about sustainability.
Figure 1 - A Massive Collection of Used Tires in CA (Burtynsky)

The Limits of Progress

The limits of progress are beginning to emerge for those who are paying attention to some of the cracks which are occurring in both technological developments as well as the economic and political systems as well. Bill McKibben has been a staunch critic of our current development path. In "The End of Nature" McKibben wrote about the toll that the natural systems were taking due to so-called progress and how this situation was unsustainable in the long run. Furthermore, McKibben has also applied a similar methodology to technological advancements in bio-engineering; especially with humans. In the book, enough McKibben examains what it means to be human and how crossing this line might also endanger an evolutionary balance that could also be detrimental to the species in the long run (McKibben).

Furthermore if our economic systems are going to meet the challenges that can the growing environmental concerns then they must move to rapidly embrace sustainable practices. Although some innovative companies have already done this voluntarily, there are a plethora of companies…

Sources Used in Documents:

Works Cited

Burtynsky, E. Photographic Works. 1999. Web. 12 July 2012.

CO2 Now. "Earth's CO2 Home Page." 12 July 2012. CO2 Now. Web. 12 July 2012.

Hensen, J., et al. "Target Atmoshperic CO2: Where Should Humanity Aim?" NASA Goddard Intitute for Space Studies (2008): 1-18. Web.

McKibben, B. Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet. New York City: St. Martin's Griffin, 2011. Print.

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