The consequences of a “Technological Fix”

The technological fix is a highly controversial concept. Many scientists and engineers have debated for years on the concept, and whether or not the consequences of a technological fix are worth the risk. Douthwaite believes a technological fix is always useful and necessary even if only temporarily to buy people more time to solve a problem. He believes the consequences are a necessary side effect of a technological fix, though many would disagree. As Johnston states in his work, ”notably the general provision of soma pills to relieve unhappiness, as portrayed in Aldous Huxley’s Brave New World, to suggest there were limits to how far technological fixes should go,” (Johnston 50). He states how there is a limit to the use of a technological fix and boundaries that shouldn’t be crossed. Huesemann states in his paper how there is no net gain when a human makes something from the environment and how nature can’t be perfected, (Huesemann 8).

Technological fixes often have unintended outcomes, whether they be positive or negative. With it comes to environmental problems, a technological fix to something like pests destroying crops is easily made, but the potential risks are difficult to calculate before anything is used. Take DDT for example, it was commonly used in the 50’s and 60’s as a pesticide; but years later they discovered the lasting harmful effects the chemical had on people and the environment. So I don’t believe harmful consequences should prevent solutions from being developed, but I believe those solutions should be looked at more closely and the potential risks and unintended consequences should be identified. Once that is done, maybe a more effective solution could come from those previous ideas.

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