The Covid-19 pandemic did not come out of the blue. It was a symptom of the fundamental structures of industrial civilization, and it is an early warning signal for how this civilization is rapidly eroding the very conditions of its own existence.
Over the last decade, environmental scientists have warned that human activities are increasingly at risk of the breaching planetary boundaries that define the environmental limits in which humanity can safely operate.
As industrial civilisation increasingly encroaches on natural ecosystems, we are reducing this ‘safe operating space’ for human survival.
Deforestation is one of the most intractable and yet most potent drivers of environmental crisis. It is also among the four out of nine planetary boundaries that civilisation was already at high risk of crossing five years ago according to research published in the journal Science.
Other boundaries we were on the brink of breaching at that time included the rate at which species were going extinct, levels of atmospheric carbon dioxide, and the flow of nitrogen and phosphorus into the environment due to industrial agriculture. The further we breach these and other planetary boundaries, the greater the risk of irreversibly driving the Earth into a less hospitable state for humanity. Read More