Professor Paul Ehrlich at Stanford University made a presentation entitled 'Can you avoid the Apocalypse? "Main profession Ehrlich — a biologist, but his performance was much broader and included the study of economics and technology. He listed the major environmental problems which bring disaster to our planet, and a short presentation each.
On many issues you can find a wealth of information (extinction of species, climate change, pollution), but there are other prerequisites doomsday less known to the general public.
For example, global toxification: we crowded planet with toxic substances, and therefore, the probability of interaction of various chemical elements and the possibility of a deadly chemical compound is growing exponentially every year. At present, there is no practical way to improve the situation. We know how to deal with environmental pollution and limit emissions of carbon dioxide, but the science does not know how to handle the chemical reaction caused by the combination of toxic substances in the soil. The highlight of the report was the emphasis on non-obvious to the layman dependence seemingly innocent factors, the totality of which can be fatal to the entire population of Earth.
The biggest challenge for Paul Ehrlich was the fact that the environmental apocalypse is not a topic to discuss a wide range of scientists and experts. 'In Silicon Valley, where I live now, it is much more likely to warm up the topic of conversation on a new smartphone model or ethnic restaurant around the corner, than the thought of approaching end of the world. " Paul Ehrlich stated that the cultural evolution has led to misunderstanding of the population of the Earth that is at stake.
According to Professor Ehrlich, public organizations need to create a culture of panic. Cultural change can break a situation to decrease human impact on the environment and climate change. A market economy can not solve all the problems, because it can not grow forever. Democracy is also not able to solve the problems of a global nature, as a result of providing our politicians are interested in re-election for a further term, not to save the world.
Paul Ehrlich noted that scientists are guilty of inaction of the public. Climate change is one of the victims of the century specialization: most scientists are so focused on their subject that they can only visualize a specific threat, and do not realize that such a threat, combined with threats, visible to other specialists creates a much greater threat.
Category: Scientists, experts, science