TED Conversations

Mark Hurych


This conversation is closed.

Imagine a scenario this century that is very bleak for agriculture. What do you think we should do to address humanity's thrivability?

Suppose two things:
Suppose that the food producing carrying capacity (the number of people that can be fed from arable land) of the Earth within this century becomes less than one billion due to climate change, what do you think we should do to address thrivability? Suppose that you had all the necessary resources to act. For full credit, apply empathy, logic, and self-integrating system properties. Yes, this might be on the final exam.

Jeremy Rifkin,

Paul Gilding,

Ray Kurzweil,

Michelle Holliday,


Closing Statement from Mark Hurych

Thanks to everyone that participated. I apologize to anyone who might have felt slighted.

The answer I got here is that people are on many different islands of being about humanity's current reality. We all have hopes and fears but our paradigms I've found are unexpectedly different. Our perspectives and priorities sometimes don't even seem to have common ground.

I very much want to find that common ground, across cultures, across the globe, across everything that separates and isolates us. One way I plan to address this yearning is by tuning my questions to be more inclusive and collective.

I feel that art does this, pulls us together and gives us common ground, even across language barriers and across time. I want to be good. This sounds so strange but I want to be a good ancestor. I don't see myself as an artist but I would very much like to do something for the greater good the way a composer or an artist might leave behind an inspiring artifact.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.

  • thumb
    Jan 3 2013: How about "Contraction and Convergence" or equalizing and minimizing a carbon allotment for each human on the planet...
    Any opinions?
    • thumb
      Jan 4 2013: It is very hard to imagine that minimizing our per capita carbon output would be optimal for our well being.
    • Jan 5 2013: C&C [or "Contraction and Convergence"] is one part of an integrated four part concept-constitution.

      The first 'domain' of this is 'Contraction and Concentrations'. Here, simply put, the question is what global total of future emissions is consistent with a safe and stable concentration outcome and thus achieving compliance with the objective of the UN Climate Treaty [UNFCCC].

      Then - Domain two "Contraction and Convergence" and domain three "Contraction and Conversion" options are computed as a function of the result obtained in the first domain calculation.

      The overall result is then tested against Domain four "Damages and Growth". This means the whole exercise is about "Precaution" and "Prevention" and analysing to ensure that we are 'doing enough soon enough' to make it worth the effort [as doing too little too late is obviously not].

      What is optimal is achieving UNFCCC-compliance.

      What is not optimal or ever going to be, is continually trying to achieve UNFCCC-compliance based on keeping the cart of growth in front of the horse or prevention, as a way of sustaining confusion and indecision by provoking conflicting ideological opinions about urgency and equity.


Showing single comment thread. View the full conversation.