Climate Change and Global Warming

THE OVERWHELMING MAJORITY of the world's professional climatologists now agree that human activities—mainly through the industrialized world's release of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere—are significantly disturbing the earth's climate, with increasingly catastrophic effects on all life systems that are already being observed.

From the rapid melting of glaciers to the bleaching of coral reefs and from the spread of tropical diseases and invasive species to increasing frequency of extreme weather events of all kinds, we now know that a virtual Pandora's Box of woes and disasters has been released that is sure to change life on earth for generations to come.

Any responses to this crisis that focus simply on technological solutions in order to make the earth safe for civilization are bound to fail. We must grasp the "inconvenient truth" that we are in a spiritual crisis, raising questions about the purpose of human life itself. If all our material "wealth" necessarily is gained at the price of deterioration of the ecosphere, if the industrial model for development has become toxic to the planet itself, don't we need a different model?