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Clean technology, while a huge opportunity, will not go to scale in time to prevent a global economic and social crisis.

Considering all the comments on my talk, The Earth is Full, I would sum up by saying that everyone pretty much agrees we face some serious ecological and resource limits. The debate is will these naturally be dealt with in the normal course of technological and market processes, or will they result in a serious global economic crisis. My view is strongly that a crisis is inevitable and that it will be an economic crisis - but that will then trigger a war level of mobilisation that will drive massive technological change. So relying on technology to prevent the crisis is wrong.


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  • Mar 20 2012: I agree with Paul Gilding's view simply because he has laid out the data and all the trajectories (economics, resource extraction, consumption, long term trends, etc) point to the same outcome. I fear that Peter Diamandis's view is one based on hope (and perhaps more than just a little splash of denialism).

    I should say that I have read Paul Gilding's book and I haven't read Peter's however from his presentation it seems to me he's not looking at the broader picture and the mega-trends - he's focused on the more inspiring case studies and examples. We do need to draw hope from somewhere and to be frank Gilding's belief that we will rise up out of the ashes (and parrallels to WWII) is less convincing than his thesis that the Great Disruption is imminent. But hope based on denial of the scale of the problem at hand is, as Gilding says dangerous.

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