SAC # 73

Population and Sustainability



TIME | 15 October 2009, 4pm onwards

LOCATION | CSAFE Seminar Room, , Dunedin

SPEAKER | John Gadd


Whatever else befalls our ecosphere it is difficult to imagine how human numbers can continue to increase. On the one hand James Lovelock’s Gaia hypothesis can be interpreted to imply that it is already too late to avoid Gaia becoming our nemesis; self regulatory Gaia is moving to deal with the agents that threaten the stability of life on earth, in particular destructive humankind. At the other extreme are the Micawber-like who assure us that something will turn up: that the technological ingenuity that has repeatedly defied Malthusian doomsaying will continue to do so indefinitely. This talk will view the problem from the position of those who think that “something must be done”; it will discuss the Ecological Footprint and other methods that have been employed to address population issues and include observations made whilst working abroad.

About the Speaker

John is a retired graduate mechanical engineer with additional training and experience in industrial management. Apart from 8 years during which he managed Taste Nature organic food shop here in Dunedin, his 44 years of working life was spent almost half and half in engineering and in teaching Maths and Computing in a sixth form college in the UK. Issues of sustainability and survival confronted him whilst working as an engineer in Calcutta with the result that he has been active in environmental concerns ever since.


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