Thank the Pessimists

The Anthropocene is a fitting name and needs to be accepted as the new epoch. The new era should be established at the beginning of the industrial revolution because the era was the beginning of a massive human use of coal and other fossil fuels for energy. (Steffen, 616, 617). People had impacted the environment before the industrial revolution, but humans have had the help of machines in harming the environment ever since, partly because those machines can produce a large amount of energy, which also brings capital to the owners and companies. Humans today still use coal for energy production, which is why all humans today are still contributing to the harm that is the Anthropocene. (Kolbert, 2-4).

I think that Kahan makes a great point. How would remote villages and towns get enough information on the overall effect on the environment by humans? Even if the remote villages had decent information, those people may not care or think that they are harming the environment since their local population is so small. People’s beliefs in politics or just community values like mining could effect some views on climate change. Dr. Whitlock made climate change seem less scary by phrasing it “changing climate” and presented the climate effects locally because those effects are more visible and may cause people to care about their immediate surroundings more than the ones across the world. I think that all people should care about their immediate environment, and of course the world, because if all humans care for their local environment, then the world environment will become cleaner. People should talk about climate change in a friendly, but serious manner because the effects are noticeable for everyone, despite differing views, and because humans are running out of time to change.

One thought on “Thank the Pessimists”

  1. I really liked that you talked about how if we focus on our local environment then by doing so we ultimately can change the world. It definitely is difficult for people to envision problems that happen halfway across the world. When those problems are in your own backyard they become more real to us. We can physically see the effects that fire has on Montana and how they become more devastating each year. In your first paragraph you talked about how machines have increased our destructiveness, but from the readings I have to argue that this wouldn’t have ever been possible without fire. I believe once humans harnessed and were able to control fire, we really crossed the threshold.

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