Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Gaia wounded

As the talks unfold, in the run up to Rio +20, the WWF has released the latest Living Planet Report, which shows that the global biodiversity has decreased by about 30% between 1970-2008, demand for resources is increasing, it now takes the planet 1.5 years to produce the resources which we use in 1 year, and WWF estimates that by 2030 it will take two planets to meet our demands. 

On top of this there are very worrying signs that the Gaian system which we all depend on may be under strain.  A recent study, published in Nature found that over the last century, phytoplankton may have declined by up to 40%,  this is staggering!  If the phytoplankton go, it is pretty much bye bye marine food chain.
Australian and US scientists have also found that there has been an estimated 60% drop in Antarctic Bottom Water since 1970.  This is the cold dense water which drives ocean currents, having a major effect on global climate. 

With our current "who dies with the best toys wins" paradigm and the imperatives to consume.  With the political focus on the financial crisis and in the face of corporate power, it is difficult to see how we will make the radical changes needed in time.