Limitations of current human resource use, planetary boundaries and climate change – with Helga Kromp-Kolb

Aug 16, 2017 by

by Yunhee Choi & Pem Lepcha

The key to our future is to find ways to do more with less – Bill Nye

As the first activity of the AEMS program, we attended the lecture on topics called “Limitations of current human resource use, planetary boundaries and climate change” with Helga Kromp-Kolb. Based on the various scientific evidence that she suggests, we have confirmed that human activity is threatening the Earth’s system. Out of nine boundaries, we have already crossed climate change, biodiversity loss, and the biogeochemical flow boundaries, which are irreversible and abrupt environmental changes. I think this all happened due to rapid population growth over the past years. This needs to be stopped before it becomes human kind’s biggest regret in history and at the loss of our own children. Although it is very hard to provide solid, spoon feeding solutions to the problems, I am sure that if somehow we can keep our population growth on a linear path, we could save ourselves and future generations. As we ignore the fact that there is not another Earth ‘B’, we continue to stress our planet and the ‘doubling time is shortened. Yet, there is also another bitter fact and it is hard to accept: we have already done half the damage to our mother Earth and humankind won’t survive if we continue harming her. We are facing lots of natural crises like flood, water scarcity, storm, heat and so on due to our negligence and increasing desire for our wants.

Through this lecture, we could elicit a variety of questions, such as;

  1. Is stabilization of temperature/climate still possible?
  2. Why are ecosystems not able to heal by themselves?
  3. How can we make a new paradigm that integrates the continued development of human societies and the maintenance of the Earth system?

It is high time that we start from little initiatives in our local communities and move towards achieving our global goal that is to save our mother Earth. Therefore if we do not do act as one, think as one and work as one we are committing suicide or inviting death. For this reason, I think we need to be many ‘Club[s] of Rome’.