Category: Mike Bell

CLIMATE CHANGE CHRONICLE 43a: Toward A New Sustainability

Last Thursday evening I attended a meeting in Courtenay on sustainability. Its purpose was to help implement the recommendations on sustainability laid down in local government documents a few years ago. There were a number of short presentations on a wide range of topics from a number of groups indicating the services they were providing. It was a well-organized meeting and very impressive.
But, as I was driving home I came away with a sense that the major issue was not dealt with. The key question: “What is sustainability in a climate changing world?” And herein lies a paradox.

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CLIMATE CHANGE CHRONICLE 41: Thinking in Contexts – Two Stories

If we hope to think realistically about dealing with climate change in a changing world, we have to learn to think in contexts. The word “context” comes from two Latin words: “con” meaning “together” and “textere” meaning “to weave”. So “context” means “to weave together”.
Dealing with climate change is not like dealing with a specific service or discipline—like environment, or medicine, or physics. It is a weaving together of a variety of different elements into a context.

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CLIMATE CHANGE CHRONICLE 40: The Transition to Community Climate Change Cultures

In the previous two chronicles I have used the analogy of the chrysalis experience to describe the need for transitions in dealing with a climate changing world.
Chronicle 38 introduced the three life stages of the chrysalis: the caterpillar cocoon stage, the imaginal cell stage, and the new butterfly stage. The major focus was on the cocoon that I described as a colonial cocoon protecting the economic and sometimes political systems designed to gorge themselves on Earth’s resources.

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If Earth is in a transition from the Holocene era to the Anthropocene era, we must transition with it. We must find our place in a new kind of Earth. We are, after all, earthlings. We have come from Earth through an evolutionary process. Our consciousness is part of the consciousness of the living Earth and a conscious universe. We are in the Earth… and Earth and the conscious universe are in us.

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CLIMATE CHANGE CHRONICLE 38: The Climate Change Chrysalis Experience

I’ve been looking for a story to describe the climate change transitions between where we are now, where we are going and how we are going to get there.  I think I have found one—the chrysalis experience. It is an analogy. It shows the transitions that occur between the caterpillar and the butterfly in the cocoon. I’m using it to help illustrate the three stages in the climate change challenge.

The Chrysalis Experience In Nature

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CLIMATE CHANGE CHRONICLE 37: On the Road to the Ecozoic Era

In their book, The Universe Story: From the Primordial Flaring Forth to the Ecozoic Era, Brian Swimme and Thomas Berry predict the coming of the Ecozoic Era. (“Eco” from the Greek “house or home”, and “Zoic” from the Greek, meaning “pertaining to living things” thus “the house or home of living things”.) The dominant characteristic of this new era will be a mutually enhancing relationship between our species and Earth.
Some folks will say, “This is ridiculous. They can’t just make up a name for a new era. Do they think they have a crystal ball or something to see into the future?”

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