Global Catastrophic Environmental Risks: systemic collapse from anthropogenic environmental change
Since the publication of Our Final Century? in 2003, perhaps the largest growth in public awareness of global catastrophic risk has related to environmental risks from anthropogenic climate change and loss of biosphere integrity. The need for urgent global action to address these problems is indisputable, however both their causes and the scale of the threat they pose to human civilization remain matters of debate.
This panel will consider the ways in which human economies, societies, and cultures interact with the global environment, both to create changes that threaten our future – and potentially the future of our entire planet – and increase our vulnerability and exposure to this risk. These include economic growth and inequality, industrial processes, and appropriate development and human reproduction and demographic change.
Jason Hickel: Ecological breakdown and the degrowth imperative
Jason Hickel is an economic anthropologist, author, and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. He is currently Visiting Senior Fellow at the International Inequalities Institute at the London School of Economics, and Senior Lecturer at Goldsmiths, University of London.
Veerabhadran Ramanathan: Existential Risks from Climate Change
Veerabhadran Ramanathan is the Presidential Chair in Climate Sustainability at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography of the University of California San Diego.
Joan Diamond: Environmental Change and Collapse of Civilization
Joan Diamond is the Executive Director of the Millennium Alliance for Humanity and the Biosphere (MAHB), a Stanford University initiative addressing the gap between knowledge of the human predicament and societies’ failure to respond.