๐Ÿ“‘ Are we on the road to civilisation collapse?

Bookmarked Are we on the road to civilisation collapse? (bbc.com)

Studying the demise of historic civilisations can tell us about the risk we face today, says collapse expert Luke Kemp. Worryingly, the signs are worsening.

In an article a part of aย new BBC Future series about the long view of humanity, Luke Kemp unpacks the historical reasons that have contributed to the fall of past empires. These reasons include climate change, inequality, increasing complexity and demand on the environment. Although Kemp suggests there are reasons to be optimistic, he also warns that the connected nature of today’s civilization has made for a rungless ladder where any fall has the potential to be fatal.

Marginalia

Think of civilisation as a poorly-built ladder. As you climb, each step that you used falls away. A fall from a height of just a few rungs is fine. Yet the higher you climb, the larger the fall. Eventually, once you reach a sufficient height, any drop from the ladder is fatal.

With the proliferation of nuclear weapons, we may have already reached this point of civilisational โ€œterminal velocityโ€. Any collapse โ€“ any fall from the ladder โ€“ risks being permanent. Nuclear war in itself could result in an existential risk: either the extinction of our species, or a permanent catapult back to the Stone Age.

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