Last night, I braved the elements and made my way to the town hall for After the binge…the apocalypse? Miriam Baltuck, Peter Cullen, James Lovelock, Marion Nestle – (Chair Phillip Adams)
Adams announced that the session was being recorded and would make its
way to air via radio national. (I will try and track down the audio for
you to enjoy).
The session was reasonably lively, with short
talks by each speaker followed by a robust question and answer
section. Miriam was first up, bringing her NASA ‘rocket scientist’
perspective to the question. Her key point was that we aint gunna be
able to live on other planets any time soon, so we had better look
after this one. Being a marine scientist, Miriam suggested that smart
use of oceans could be a way forward.
Peter was up next with a focus on Adelaide and water that reminded me of my blog post
from womadelaide. He gave us some scary insights into our reliance on
rainfall and dared to ask what it would be like living in a city that
ran out of water. The (recurring) theme of ‘water theft’ was raised
for the first time in the evening.
James had us all
mesmerised with his deep understanding of complex systems, giving us
clues to management of ocean and atmosphere that could get us out of
trouble. His comparison to the future climate of Europe to the current
climate of Australia was very compelling. He also suggested that there
will be a lot of people movement around the planet as conditions change
Marion finished up, advising us to vote with our forks.
That is to say that we get to make a choice every time we buy / prepare
/ eat food. If we don’t like the effects of industrialised
agriculture, there a plenty of farmers willing to grow food ye olde
way, and it turns out that this is just about as efficient as the
horribly industrialised global mechanisms in place today.
hoping the audio from the question and answer sessions is posted
somewhere, because there was just too much detail and too many
interesting players to relay to you here. The thing that stuck in my
mind was the comment that James made – ‘this sounds similar to what was
being said just before world war II’ (in response to questions /
comments suggesting that we might be better served by stronger
leadership than we currently enjoy in the era of TV democracy).
So, if you want to keep up with the stuff I find from the festival, subscribe to feed.mikeseyfang.com and keep an eye out for posts that start with AFOI.