CHRIS FREMANTLE

Eco-thinking?

Posted in CF Writing, Exhibitions by chrisfremantle on August 3, 2009

Paul Kingsnorth in the Guardian 1 August 2009

Technology and hubris.  What is the role of technology in solving the huge challenges that face the world (i.e. all the species living on the planet earth)?  Watching the Center for Land Use Interpretation’s slide show of the Trans Alaskan Pipeline in the Radical Nature Show at the Barbican, I was struck by the scale and sophistication of our engineering (technological) capacities.  I came away feeling that it was not optional.  Yes, I might use the car less, walk more, fly less, use the train more, recycle more, reuse more, eat more vegetables and less meat, grow more potatoes.  I might also be political working on projects which raise environmental issues, join the green party, read the latest thinking on green issues.  But the idea that we, as unspecialised animals, don’t use technology to solve our problems, is impossible.  Kingsnorth rightly highlights the real problem about the application of existing assumptions to the new challenges: they are not ‘wind farms’ they are ‘ wind power stations.’  But pride is a great driver of human development, technological as much as philosophical.  How do we apply our technological imaginations and skills with modesty and humility and a respect for all the other lifeforms on the planet?

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