compassion, collaboration & cooperation iN transistion
"James Lovelock will go down in history as the scientist who changed our view of the Earth from a barren rock covered with a thin coating of life to a self-organising system that in many ways resembles a single organism. Following a conversation with the novelist William Golding, Lovelock named this self-regulating system after the Greek earth goddess Gaia. Viewed with suspicion by Darwinian fundamentalists, Gaia theory is now widely accepted and used in scientific disciplines. Its implication is that humanity is part of a much larger system that it cannot control, still less master. The Earth's self-regulating processes impose limits on human ambitions, and if humanity acts to destabilise the system, the Earth will readjust in ways that show no regard for human welfare."
In The Revenge of Gaia - the most important book ever to be published on the environmental crisis - Lovelock applies Gaia theory to climate change. Using the latest scientific findings, he concludes that an abrupt and radical climatic shift is unavoidable. Global heating - as he prefers to describe it - is set to take its course: "We are the cause of it, and nothing so severe has happened since the start of the Eocene, 55 million years ago, when the change was larger than that between the ice age and the 19th century and lasted for 200,000 years".
John Gray - The Independent
Friday 27 January 2006 01:00
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