Epistemological field in the study of climate change

Posted May 8, 2011 Avatar Maria Eugenia Rinaudo

Avatar Maria Eugenia Rinaudo View Profile
Member since February 25, 2011
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James Lovelock once said, “We are dangerously ignorant of our own ignorance and rarely get to have a global perspective of things…” and it’s true.

We must recognize that most of society continues in its attempt to separate themselves from nature, failing to acknowledge that humans and the rest of the living (animals and plants) belong to one natural body complex, Earth.

According to the Engineer Rafael Rodriguez, in his book, Climate Change: Physical Answer to Human Behavior (2009), talks about environmental investigations, which have gone through different orientations "from the development of environmentalism and the predominance of qualitative methods, to ethical movement with a social supremacy in the approach to environmental problem, and the proliferation of perspectives and paradigmatic of qualitative trends with a strong human character."

Today, the challenges of climate change, peak oil, and overpopulation demand that we unlearn everything we know about real world economies and societies. We need to re-imagine, rewire, and redesign our societies to meet these challenges. We need, for a start, to de-carbonize our economies and shift into climate neutral (or climate negative) societies in order to bring down the level of carbon in the atmosphere to the safe level of 350 parts per million.

Van Jones (2009) once said, “Getting to 350 (ppm) means changing everything about our global economy. It means providing clean-energy jobs to rewire every corner of the world and catalyzing a global transformation built on principles of equity and opportunity.”

I think this is right. I also think that to achieve this, we will need to unlearn most everything that we know about ‘normal life’, including everything that we have thought and expected about the future.

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