By: Indur Goklany and Anthony Trewavas


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The ecological footprint concept is used by some to argue that technological and economic growth have caused the carrying capacity of the Earth to be exceeded.

But in this letter to Nature, Indur Goklany and Anthony Trewavas argue that, paradoxically, both technology and economic development provide the means to solve the very problems they create. Dispensing with present technology would be catastrophic in human terms, they say; people would be more hungry, unhealthy and short-lived, without the world necessarily becoming ecologically more stable.

Without technological change and economic development, there can be no solution to the predicament of meeting human needs while containing human impact on the planet, they argue. Although neither of these factors is a panacea, they make a solution more likely.

Link to article in Nature

Source: Nature 423, 115