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View Diary: Book Review: The Ecological Rift (13 comments)

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  •  Actually a forest and a tree farm (1+ / 0-)
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    Deward Hastings

    can be the same thing - they may look different (and generally, the modern conception of a forest is an unhealthy and unnatural ecology - tree farms can be closer to historical norms) but they may provide the same ecological services, which relate to air quality, water, wildlife and other things, not some profit-making or human-centric activity necessarily.

    One thing that is changing is that the big private forest owners are no longer willing to wait out the "traditional" 80 year cycle for harvesting - they've either switched to a 40 year cycle, or worse, have discovered that real estate is more profitable than timber. If you harvest trees, they'll grow back - that's not true when you turn the forest into golf courses and suburban/exurban/summer home developments.

    That kind of degradation is taking place here in a capitalist system, but there's nothing to exclude that from happening in a purely socialist system either. (You can, for example, examine the environmental records of the former Soviet Union or China, even to the present day).

    And regardless of your favorite "ism", you have to have an answer to questions like "What are we going to build homes out of?", "Where will the copper for wind turbines or a smart grid come from?" and a lot more similar problems that need solution, barring a return to something like medieval lifestyle (and even they cut down trees and mined).

    What needs to be fought instead is a war of position - you need to alter the terms of the cultural hegemony, the ethos, or whatever you want to call it. That seems fairly obvious from the way the climate crisis is playing out. The prevailing cultural views and practices need to become environmentally aware and concerned. That's true regardless of which "ism" you prefer.

    The energy companies and other large polluters understand this - their opponents largely don't. At least not since David Brower died.

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood - Tom Robbins

    by badger on Fri Dec 30, 2011 at 12:16:56 PM PST

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