Topical Sustainability

Just happen to be reading Jared Diamond’s “Collapse” – only a couple of chapters beyond the intros – Montana and Polynesia so far. Noticed this news item about sustainability of irrigation in NW India.

Good read, Diamond’s book, but quite a straightforward message, I think. Natural or man-made, sustainable success or failure is always a two-way causal balance of many factors over many timescales. Local ecosystem fragility rather than “climate change” – there may be a single clear cause or event that precipitates a boom or bust, but the pattern of stability and fragility of the system is inherent. The parallels and contrasts between small isolated communities, our global village and the one and only isolated earth are clear. Despite the title “Collapse” … the book is very mater of fact and optimistic about lessons learnable.

Diamond is an interesting writer with the benefit of 3 or 4 “careers”. Worth listening to.

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