Life is subject to continuous co-evolution with its environment. While planet Earth provides the conditions that permit life to exist, life itself alters these conditions. This process regularly involves the extinction of species. Does humanity sit on a branch of life that will continue to evolve, or on an unsuccessful branch of evolution? To what extent do we settle our own fate?
Humans cannot live directly from rocks, water, and sunlight, but depend on an elaborate and well-balanced biosystem, containing a diversity of fauna, flora, and plenty of microorganisms. This balance is under threat. Not only do we need to be concerned about the disappearance of many of our fellow creatures from the face of the Earth, but we also see an unprecedented growth of the human population. How much pressure on the ecosystem do we exert by raising population levels from 3 billion in 1960 to about 8 billion now and further rising, and can this be sustained by the finite resources of planet Earth and the processes that ultimately keep us alive? Where would this growth need to be stopped? What damage has already been caused and can that be mitigated?
At the Blue Earth Project, NoRCEL are therefore questioning: “What challenges does the rise in global human population pose for the future of humanity by changing the ecology and environment of our home planet Earth?”. To address this, the event in question will be a one-day forum taking place on 8th January 2022, involving experts shining light on this issue from various perspectives.