Our Blog | October 2008

Evolution's Edge - The Coming Collapse and Transformation of Our World

by: Heather on 10/01/2008
Posted in: New Books

Are we poised at the brink of catastrophe or the edge of evolution? With a plummeting economy, accelerating climate change and the onset of Peak Oil, this is a very timely question. Author Graeme Taylor shares his answers in Evolution's Edge - our latest release.

This excerpt from Evolution's Edge examines the potential outcomes of societal and economic collapse.

The consequences of system failure

We don't have to look to the ancient past to see the consequences of societal collapse -- the world is full of failed and failing states. In the last few decades many societies have collapsed, with consequences ranging from war, genocide and ethnic cleansing to civil wars and economic ruin. Some examples are Cambodia, Rwanda, Yugoslavia, Afghanistan, Iraq, Somalia and the Soviet Union. In almost every case government services such as law and order, public health care and education almost disappeared, living standards sharply declined, mortality rates rose and criminal gangs took control of entire regions.

While failed states are a major source of conflict, terrorism and drugs, they do not destabilize the global economy.The real danger to the survival of our species does not come from the collapse of individual nations, but from the collapse of major ecosystems and the global economy as a whole. The global economy was able to recover from the Great Depression of the 1930s because major ecosystems were intact and the world was still full of undiscovered resources. But if the next great depression is caused by a combination of climate change and resource shortages, the world may not have the ecological or economic resilience to recover.

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