The Center for Planetary Culture is developing its first research project, as a position paper and wiki.
The question we seek to address is:
What is a strategy for rapid transition to a regenerative society?
What kind of technical and social infrastructure must be instituted?
How can media be used to bring about this transformation?
Although many remain unaware of it, the ecological crisis is the defining characteristic of our age. How we react to the situation we have unleashed on Earth will be the legacy we leave to future generations. Current predictions of accelerating climate change and loss of biodiversity could cause a rapid decline and collapse of global civilization. The alternative is that we rapidly redirect our technical resources, change our social systems, and launch global initiatives to establish a world that is socially just and ecologically viable.
The visionary design scientist Buckminster Fuller believed humanity faced a choice between “utopia or oblivion.” According to Fuller, we will either establish a world where everyone on Earth receives a research grant for life, in whatever subject interests them, or we will fall by the wayside, like the vast majority of species before us. With the acceleration of our technological capacities and the deepening of our ecological destruction, we seem to be approaching the critical threshold where we choose our path.
With our position paper and Wiki, we invite the global community to work with us to envision our current situation as an opportunity for an evolutionary leap, and document what lies beyond it. We can move beyond the limits of outmoded ideologies and cultural obstructions to build a new human society based on symbiosis, resilience, cooperation, and the rational application of our technical powers. This Wiki will critically explore and analyze the current system and highlight the many amazing alternatives and experimental projects that show us the trajectory toward a world that works for all.
Over the last several decades, governments and corporations have shown they are incapable of reacting to the ecological crisis with the necessary urgency. Recent reports from scientific bodies like the United Nation’s International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) make it evident that we have now reached a critical threshold. A global movement of civil society must arise as a third force. We have only a short window of time – perhaps a few years – before the crisis becomes overwhelming. For a civil society movement to succeed, leaders and civilians must organize around a cohesive vision and shared strategy.
Technically, nothing prevents us from reconstructing human society rapidly, using the communications infrastructure and social tools that evolved in the last decades. Sustainable technologies for permaculture, bioremediation, holistic health, rainwater harvesting, alternative energies, and so on can be mass distributed or manufactured locally. We can use mass media and social media to re-train the global population and disseminate a new set of values and principles that support a holistic and sustainable way of life. Facing rising seas, we can construct eco-cities that act as scaffoldings for living systems, supporting local communities, with food and energy produced on site. Through a coordinated movement of civil society based on Gandhi-esque principles and organized through social technologies, we can dismantle the military industrial complex and institute a peaceful world.
If you want to participate in the project, please contact us: research@planetaryculture.
The position paper is live on our wiki. The content generated there will be the foundational material for new iterations of our position paper, which we will routinely published based on new information and developments.