I recently had something of a minor issue with some of the Sociologists I am working with in regards to Community Building and issues of Sustainability. It seems that all my numbers for production are quite viable. It would seem that mathematically at least, the world can contain and care for far more people than exist today and manage quite well as long as we do our part to take good care of the world that takes care of us.
In fact, our little “row” started over this very fact. While they do acknowledge that systemically at least, the world will sustain many times the current population. Their argument however, is that population density itself is unsustainable. In my mind at least, it seems that in their desire to grant people the freedom to live better, they would deny them the opportunity to live as they desire.
Insofar as sustainability on an agricultural and environmental level, as soon as we move beyond the “current” agricultural methods that are in fact hundreds (and in some cases even thousands) of years old and outdated, we can vastly improve production with an even more meaningful reduction in land use and environmental impact. In some studies, crop production has been improved a staggering seventeen hundred percent … in other words, what used to require some seventeen hectares to grow, can now be grown on a single hectare of land.
Mind you, these are not genetically modified crops or GMO in any sense of the word but merely a change in the way farming is done. Even if a limited number of large-scale crops such as grains can not yet be adequately reduced in size and nature, it is entirely viable for each and every home to provide its own power and a surplus of foods. While such a strategy may not fit very well with the big city life, it certainly bodes well for suburbia and out into the more rural areas. Therein however, lies the crux of the argument by the sociologists I am (blessed to be) working with.
Like mine, their theories are sound and true as well. Unlike me however, they are focused more on the sociological and/or the psychological aspects of the living situation. Their belief is that any numbers of people too large to fit comfortably in an area are going to, by the very facts of human nature, lead to division and ultimately, to some level of conflict.
I do not doubt for one moment that they are correct.
History has shown again and again a larger division of people in the inner cities and population centers than there ever has been in the more rural, less densely populated areas … regardless of race, creed or upbringing. Such is human nature though, and while they are correct, there are other mitigating factors that have to be taken into consideration as well.
Our primary focus is to establish a global network of Autonomous, Sovereign but united communities This is a common cause for all of us. In these communities we wish to establish readily accessible educational institutions, readily accessible hospital and medical care and a host of other benefits including readily accessible housing and sociological, psychological and vocational and scholastic assistance for these families in addition to a host of other benefits to eventually eradicate poverty altogether.
However, if we were to limit the communities to realistically sustainable numbers in terms of population, none of these communities would have enough people in it to sustain the infrastructure, much less the environment needed to keep such a community going. Additional concerns are introduced when the prospect of globally connected communities is considered because now, additional personnel will be needed for the international trade, logistical support and other needs of international communities.
The numbers just fail to meet anywhere and while that is bad enough, there is one consideration that it seems to me the Sociologists would be among the first to admit. If in fact their overall goal is an improved life for everyone, they seem to be forgetting one very important factor. While people like us … and I am indeed very proud to count them as my friends … that do not want to live in large, congested and often far-too-dirty cities like New York, San Francisco and other International Portals around the globe, there are quite literally millions of people who do. What good is an improved method of life and living if choice and free-will are taken away from the very people that we are professing to be working for?
It is historically shown that it will take nearly four generations for the “new way of thinking” today to become the “normal way of thinking” or “just the way things are and the way they always have been”. It is foolish to think … and even more foolhardy to believe that we are going to go out and change the world and the way they think overnight.
What we can do in the meantime however, is to provide a great many smaller communities around the globe, all connected through the larger, more congested and for us at least, more uncomfortable “big cities” and International Portals while at the same time, working to create a more sustainable, viable method of living for those that do not want to live in the madness of the big cities.
Indeed, what would we accomplish even if we did make the world itself a better place to live in but made it miserable or in some people's minds, a virtual living hell where nobody was happy with our decisions or the way we set things up? People are people and as such, they will always demand their freedom … and they should have that at least.
We can make the world a better place for certain but it has to be done in such a way that the people retain absolute freedom over their own lives, most notably of all perhaps, their social and economic freedom and the freedom to live wherever and however they wish to live.