FROM 'SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT' TO 'ECOLOGICAL CIVILIZATION': WINNING THE WAR FOR SURVIVAL

Arran Gare
2017 The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy   unpublished
'Let there be no illusions. Taking effective action to halt massive injury to the earth's environment will require a mobilization of political will, international cooperation and sacrifice unknown except in wartime. Yet humanity is in a war right now, and it is not too draconian to call it a war for survival. It is a war in which all nations must be allies. ' Thomas A. Sancton, Time Magazine, 1989 ABSTRACT: The central place accorded the notion of 'sustainable development' among those
more » ... ong those attempting to overcome ecological problems could be one of the main reasons for their failure. It frames debates in a way that entrenches current priorities and marginalizes environmental issues. 'Ecological civilization' is proposed and defended as an alternative. 'Ecological civilization' has behind it a significant proportion of the leadership of China who would be empowered if this notion were taken up in the West. It carries with it the potential to fundamentally rethink the basic goals of life and to provide an alternative image of the future. It could both inspire people and provide the cultural foundations for the cultural, social and economic transformations necessary to create a new world order, a world order in which humans augment rather than undermine the ecosystems of which they are part. This paper explicates these implications.
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