Saturday, August 23, 2014

The complexity of environmental thought

We'll begin class on Monday, and I'll start teaching the second-year core curriculum Environmental Issues and Insights class. One of the purposes of that class is for students to begin to explore further the many, many variants of environmental thought in the United States, including their own considered or (as-yet) unconsidered attitudes.

There are a lot of different possible points of view. One that I find particularly compelling is a kind of technological and scientific pragmatism. As most Unity-rians know, I'm a competent scientist and technologist and have very little of the kind of blind fear of technology that permeates so much of modern environmentalism. But this is a minority viewpoint within the environmental movement, and even unpopular among my own students.

Here's an interesting and revealing personal introduction to this kind of thinking from Stanford's Martin Lewis, via the Breakthrough Institute.

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