Dylan Barsby

Volunteer in Cape Town, South Africa

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Environmental consciousness is a pivotal transition in the way that we human beings think and behave. Whilst the fashionable trend of ‘GOING GREEN’ is a positive step in the right direction, the subsequent step forward, is to become an environmentally conscious individual. It has become increasingly apparent that the more we allow the Earth’s environment to become spoiled and disrupted, the greater the negative knock-on effect on us. Because we did not pay sufficient attention to this simple fact in the past, we are now facing a number of serious threats to human health and wellbeing including: Climate Change and Global Warming, Pollution of our Air, Water and Soil Loss of Marine Life and Earths Biodiversity Natural resources being used up faster than the Earth can recover or reproduce. While we do need to take remedial action to deal with these threats, it is important that we also look at the underlying causes. We need to recognize that all of these threats are symptoms and effects of the mind-set and value systems that caused them. If we wish to fix these symptoms and effects, then we have to begin by ‘changing our minds’. We need to consider that there are sub-conscious values and drivers that contribute to the destruction of our Environment. Destructive Drivers Ignorance – simply not knowing any better Short-term thinking – not taking the long term consequences into consideration. Isolated or Insular thinking – not recognising that everything is interconnected and that therefore certain actions which may be beneficial for one aspect or part may actually be harmful when looked at in context of the whole. Selfish thinking – not caring about the consequences and effect on others. Greed – taking much more than you need. Dogma – insisting on doing things in a particular way (irrespective of the consequence) because that’s the way they have always been done in the past or because that’s the way a certain Authority says that they should be done. Combative attitudes – whilst competition can be healthy as it encourages growth and improvement, excessive and unnecessary competition (involving damage to or destruction of, a competitor or their resources) is not healthy for people or the environment. Consumer culture – It is a recognised fact that human beings are currently consuming quantities of Earths resources faster than the Earth can recover or replenish these resources. This is driven by a cultural value system that implies that the more you have, consume a

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