Can Environmental and Societal Collapse be Controlled?

In the recent discussions that we had about Easter Island and the collapse of societies, I contributed many of my own ideas to the conversations that we had. In our discussions, I brought up my idea that the fall of Easter Island could have been prevented. I personally believe that the way they handled their resources was the cause of their fall and that they could have been more responsible about the use of their limited resources. One of the points that I brought up that sparked more conversation was the fact that the rivalry between the two groups on the Island really damaged their chances of survival. The Island that they lived on already had limited resources, and their competition caused them to use them up faster and irresponsibly. After bringing this up in my breakout room discussion, another person in my group mentioned how the competition and rivalry created a lack of communication that was what led to using up the resources faster than the land could sustain. I listened to all the things that my classmates had to say, even the ones who believed that the collapse of the island was inevitable. After listening to their points as well, I clearly saw both sides of the discussion and even started to agree with aspects of each side. This discussion and the consideration of all aspects of the Easter Island society helped me to realize all the factors that really go into environmental, and societal decline. It isn’t as simple as overusing resources. In the section of the discussion where we talked about the similarities and differences between the issues on the Island and the ones we faced today, the point that I brought up in our group was that technology is one of the biggest differences between our problems and theirs. Our modern technology such as cars, machines, factories, etc, release harmful chemicals and fumes into the atmosphere at really large rates. This causes us to damage our environment quicker than they did. Along with that, the machines that we use to cut down trees and cultivate the land increase the speed at which forests are destroyed and land is over-tilled. I think that my main takeaway from this week and these assignments is that there isn’t really any straightforward thing that we can do to save the environment. Obviously there are things we can do to help it, but altogether, there is no simple solution to stop the depletion of resources on earth. I also took away how important it is to have multiple views from many different people when trying to come up with a solution to a problem. Otherwise, it will be a one-sided solution and won’t be effective. The different views on it will help ensure that it will be an effective solution for all kinds of people and in all kinds of circumstances. With this, I can apply to my life how to better solve problems by discussing the solutions with different people and gathering outside perspectives so that I can consider all sides of the issue.

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