interview > lynd > lynd 30
Lynd 30 (1:52)
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There's the pessimistic view that essentially
we're already committed to so many things, so much global warming, so
much population growth, that things look really bleak, and we must be headed
towards disaster. And that coexists with an optimistic view that there are lots
of solutions out there. And I guess that the short answer I can give you is
that both of those are true; that extrapolation of current trends is an
extremely difficult picture to imagine having a happy ending and that given
realization, that we need to be on other paths, we've only started to
scratch the surface as a society towards how we can do things better.
My favorite way to look at this, and I'll credit a
book called Natural Capitalism, which put this in a nutshell: Before the first Industrial
Revolution, people were scarce and resources were plentiful. And so we
leveraged that which we had little of, namely us, with that which we had a lot
of, namely resources, and we saw the consequences which include, you know,
orders of magnitude increase in per-worker output, which was the limiting
factor back then, but orders of magnitude increases in resource— or many
orders of magnitude resource utilization increases as well.
So now it's the opposite. People are plentiful and
resources are scarce and literally, we need a second Industrial Revolution. And
if we will commit to that, I think that we can have a world that enjoys higher
standard of livings than— I think we can navigate this transition in a
smooth way, and the world can enjoy a higher standard of living, which I think
is a security-breeding property. The world can enjoy a higher standard of
living than it ever has throughout recorded history.
So, you know, in a world where we're prepared to
innovate and change, I'm optimistic about the future. In a world where
we're not prepared to innovate and change, I'm deeply concerned.