News & events


01 November 2009

The environmental crisis and education

Kim Trollip

“We are experiencing a very chaotic time, where humanity determines the outcome for the Planet – sustainability or collapse …?” (Steffen 2008).

By Dr Jim Taylor

When Fritjof Capra wrote the Turning Point in 1982 he described much of what is going wrong in modern society. The mechanistic view of life, the biomedical model and the dark side of growth were all clearly articulated. What he could never have realised is that the world would take a further 24 years to reach its own turning point!

By 2006 the predictions, research and concerns culminated in two Nobel Prize winners, Al Gore and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) winning awards for their environmental work. The environmental crisis, fostered by fossil fuel-burning and greenhouse gas emissions, had reached centre stage. A turning point had been taken, nearly everyone was ‘aware/ but have we really turned a corner? Or are we simply engaging in an ‘all change’ process that means ‘no change?’ Wangari Maathai, a further environmental Nobel Prize winner, develops a different version of the famous ‘big five’. For her, the indicators of quality of life become: education, health, food security, electricity and water, and sanitation. For these to become realistic possibilities we simply have to take better care of planet Earth’s life support systems and it is appropriate that WESSA has identified

Reference: related document

Kim Trollip

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