Prior to beginning work on this final paper, review all chapters of Bensel and Carbone’s Sustaining Our Planet text (2020).
In this paper, you will explore what a future sustainable world might look like, and in the process of doing so, extend your previous descriptions of selected terms and explain how they may play a role in aiding us in achieving environmental sustainability on a global scale.
The Journey to Sustainability
Imagine a future (probably a long time from now) in which human beings have achieved environmental sustainability on a global scale. That means that we as a species have figured out how to maintain a lifestyle that can go on indefinitely. Humans will exist in harmony with their environment, not needing more resources than can naturally be replenished. What would such a world be like? How might we get there from here?
In this final assignment, you will play the part of science-fiction writer, imagining and describing what a sustainable Earth, inhabited by humans, might look like in the distant future.
Your paper will consist of seven paragraphs using the format below to address the elements with the assumption that environmental sustainability has been achieved:
Describe how the human relationship to nature will be different from what it is at present.
Examine how humans will cope differently with the ways that natural phenomena like hurricanes affect lives.
Describe what Earth’s biodiversity and ecosystems will look like in a sustainable future.
Explain what humans have done differently to enable biodiversity and ecosystems to function sustainably.
Examine how agricultural production will be different in a sustainable future.
Differentiate between how humans will manage water resources (fresh water and ocean) in the sustainable future compared to how it is done now.
Examine how humans will meet their energy needs in the future in a way that will enable maintenance of a sustainable, habitable atmosphere and climate.
Indicate the changes that humans have made that are enabling them to maintain a healthy atmosphere and climate for all.
Describe how waste management will be different in a sustainable future.
Indicate the changes have been made to how humans think about and treat what is currently called “waste.”
Summarize some of the major social, economic, political, and ecological choices and tradeoffs that will need to be overcome for this sustainable future to arrive. What are some of the major issues and challenges humans will have to face in order to achieve sustainability on a global scale?
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