Today we set the foundation upon which our future will stand
If you are reading this then chances are, you live in a big city. Today about 60% of human population does and in 2050 it’s expected that 80% will. That’s a pretty big change from only about 3% in 1800.
My fellow urbanites—cities are not only a place where we are gathering in the masses, but are also a place where we are spreading ideas, information and innovation like wildfire. Our cities serve as big social reactors. Rather than sending telegrams by horseback or practicing our penmanship with long romantic love letters, we are flooding all capacities with whatever we can get our hands on.
It’s fast. It’s lightning fast. And it’s a lot.
Our cities require intricate resource distribution networks to sustain concentrated populations. Cities nurture proliferating and high-energy consumptive populations and require creative solutions or adaptations to maintain existing functions at limited carrying capacities. Rather than maintaining a symbiotic relationship with immediate environmental surroundings, urban structures are empowered by parasitic dependence upon geographically distant ecosystem productions.
Massive flows of energy and materials into cities are essential just to keep its residents alive. Cutting off all flows into these massively interdependent environments would rapidly degrade human life in the form of thirst, starvation and disease. Life in today’s cities abundantly consists of uniquely human objectives such as electronic information, industrial manufacturing, and several economic variables such as money, capital, labor, wages, prices and debt. Imperceptions of this dependent matrix extend notions that the urban fabric is inorganic in nature. Rather than obeying the natural regulation of self-maintaining sustenance, these objectives disregard the biological requirements of organismic forms.
Developed urban societies suffer from unsustainable consumption patterns and a prevailing dominance of economic over environmental considerations. Rather than utilizing earth’s finite and time sensitive renewable resources for intangible creations, innovation must be employed to develop environmentally sustainable cities.
Evolution— It’s commonly thought that we descended from the trees. We learned to walk upright, and we ran through the prairies. Now we are running into cities. We are beginning to build back up in a similar state of those trees. But this time, its not predators lurking in the night causing us to seek refuge. Its because “up” is the only space available.
There beholds an evermore-increasing segregation of humans from nature. Megacities inhabiting immense populations of ten million or more inhabitants continue to arise around the world. These urban developments require vast amounts of natural resource import to sustain their populations. With this large urban demographic growth, humans must reverse current import trends and begin to develop cities that nurture inherent human biological relationships with nature. Essentially, modern urban developments must seek rejuvenation by manipulating current urban infrastructure into a more self-sufficient design. Human endeavor to create intangible empires of digital, informational and economic stature has disregarded the most essential components of biological requisition
Designing a better future involves envisioning systems that haven’t yet conceived. The transition may not be convenient, or make transparent use of money, capital and labor when food importation is cheaper than developing sustainable processes, yet it is absolutely necessary to establish a stronger link between humans and their life sources. Humanity must adopt a new set of ideological principles that serve to stabilize population development before the continued failure to properly manage environmental transgression overwhelms mankind’s most essential resources. Adaptation to this new set of principles will take both time and determination to achieve; however this paradigm shift is absolutely essential to the future well-being of our human race.