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5 Ways Coronavirus Could Help Humanity Survive the Ecological Crisis

The human tragedy of the coronavirus is immense. Thousands have died, hundreds of thousands have been infected globally, and millions more have been affected. Whilst infectious disease has always been a part of the human experience, the expansion of industrial civilization has inexorably amplified the risk of new diseases.

Uncontrolled industrial expansion also dangerously heats the planet and drives the collapse of ecosystems worldwide. Experts like Professor Jem Bendell and philosopher Rupert Read have argued that societal collapse is near inevitable and that up to 6 billion people could die. Dr Nafeez Ahmed argues the collapse of civilization may have already begun. That human civilization itself is at risk is an increasingly accepted reality of our times. More than 11,000 scientists from 153 countries have declared a climate emergency warning:  “chain reactions could cause significant disruptions to ecosystems, society, and economies, potentially making large areas of Earth uninhabitable”.

Coronavirus is both a symptom of the problematic globalized economy and an important signal that things need to change. Emergency short-term measures to contain the virus also have a positive impact on decimated global ecosystems. Crisis can be an opportunity and adopting some of these measures in perpetuity could help to avert the worst case runaway climate scenarios and help to maintain the planetary conditions that humanity is adapted to.  Here are five ways the pandemic could actually help us survive the ecological crisis:

1. Demonstrating that a less industrial future is feasible

2. Driving a massive contraction in demand for cruises and aviation

3. Shifting towards more resilient local economies

4. Ending the trade in wild animals

5. Highlighting the horrors of factory farming

The best way to prevent pandemics and avoid the scale human suffering we are seeing unfold in the world due to coronavirus is not self-isolation, handwashing or facemasks, but the jettisoning of our moribund economic, food and transport systems, and replacing them with structures that put nature and planet first. A world where factory farming and wildlife trade is outlawed. Where economic growth is not pursued at all costs, where our capacity to feed ourselves from one day to the next is in our own hands, rather than those of gigantic polluting multinational corporations.

You can reach the rest of the article from the link:

(Source: https://www.localfutures.org/5-ways-coronavirus-could-help-humanity-sur…)

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Matt Mellen
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