Author Topic: Should we worry about nature?  (Read 489 times)

Online Blackleaf (OP)

Should we worry about nature?
« on: April 19, 2017, 08:25:03 PM »
This is something I've been wondering for a while. These days, we hear a lot about protecting the environment, using renewable energy, protecting endangered species, protecting natural habitats. Of course, humanity is hurting the planet. That much has been proven. But in the grand scheme of things, does it really matter? I mean, Earth has had multiple ice ages in the past. Living conditions during those times were horrific, but life adapted to the harsh conditions. Then when the ice age was over, many of the animals that evolved during the ice age went extinct. What physical features helped them to survive before (such as thick fur coats and stumpy legs) no longer worked to their advantage.

So what's different now? Won't life adapt to our destructive ways? Won't animals evolve so that they won't walk into busy streets and get run over? Won't they eventually come to accept cities as their new habitats? Aside from nuclear fallout scorching every inch of the earth, do we really have the power to end nature?

Note: I'm just asking this out of pure curiosity. Don't shoot me.
"Birds born in a cage think flying is an illness." - Alejandro Jodorowsky

Offline Baruch

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2017, 08:28:05 PM »
If humans become extinct, particularly at their own hands, I will be unhappy about that.  But as others point out, nobody, including nature, gives a damn about my feelings.  But if we do become extinct, the surviving life forms will flourish.  Same as what happens with a good compost pile made from our table scraps of former animals and plants.
שלום

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2017, 08:28:33 PM »
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Online Blackleaf (OP)

"Birds born in a cage think flying is an illness." - Alejandro Jodorowsky

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #4 on: April 19, 2017, 08:44:12 PM »
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #5 on: April 19, 2017, 10:05:25 PM »
This is something I've been wondering for a while. These days, we hear a lot about protecting the environment, using renewable energy, protecting endangered species, protecting natural habitats. Of course, humanity is hurting the planet. That much has been proven. But in the grand scheme of things, does it really matter?
Short answer: yes.  Long answer: hell yes.

It's not really about protecting the planet.  It's about protecting ecosystems that are vital to our survival.

The Amazon rainforest is a great example of this.  The motivation behind protecting that isn't that these plants are pretty and the world would be a less awesome place without it.  It's that this area of land is rightly called "the lungs of the world" and "the world's largest pharmacy".  Losing out on that for a few more Whoppers is a terrible trade.

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So what's different now? Won't life adapt to our destructive ways?
Life in general, yes.  Specific species, almost certainly not.

One example of life adapting in response to humans is smaller fish stocks.  The big ones are more likely to get eaten, so there's selective pressure to be small.  It's evolution, baby.

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Won't animals evolve so that they won't walk into busy streets and get run over? Won't they eventually come to accept cities as their new habitats?
Some have.  Roaches.  Pigeons.  Guidos.

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Aside from nuclear fallout scorching every inch of the earth, do we really have the power to end nature?
Currently, probably not.  Nature would bounce back from almost any kind of manmade catastrophe.  Runaway global warming would eventually reverse with no humans left to burn fossil fuels.  Even nuclear winter wouldn't last forever.  It'd be one hell of a global climate disruption for a few decades, but it'd eventually subside.

Humans don't have the power to destroy the world, just ourselves.

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Note: I'm just asking this out of pure curiosity. Don't shoot me.
*lowers gun slightly*

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2017, 02:46:13 AM »
drivin on country roads you see that some deer have learned to stay off the road and some have not. Some will stay where they are off the road and watch when you pass. Others will leave their safe spot off the road and run into the road when you get close.

Part of the Amazon basin goes through Ecuador. The government of Ecuador resisted the oilmen a couple times to protect their forest. Then the oil men came back and strong armed Ecuador (Exxon has a bigger bank account than Ecuador) into signing a deal. Turns out the oil men did as much damage as Ecuador's government was afraid of.

If we take care of our ecology, other species will adapt with us in the picture. If we suicide with nuclear war, we change the pic for a lot of species. The survivors will all adapt to life without us. Then there is the part about dying in a nuclear war being painful
Would you like to play with my invisible friend? HE can give you anything that you want. All you have to do is ask HIM

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2017, 06:50:30 AM »
I'm relying on the black smokers to get things going again. Beyond that I don't have much hope.
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Online Sorginak

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2017, 10:50:43 AM »
Hopefully, before things become irrepairable, nature will create a world-wide catastrophe that will wipe out humanity so that the planet can fix itself and life can begin anew. 

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2017, 11:19:44 AM »
Hopefully, before things become irrepairable, nature will create a world-wide catastrophe that will wipe out humanity so that the planet can fix itself and life can begin anew. 

We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2017, 01:48:12 PM »
Short answer: yes.  Long answer: hell yes.

It's not really about protecting the planet.  It's about protecting ecosystems that are vital to our survival.

The Amazon rainforest is a great example of this.  The motivation behind protecting that isn't that these plants are pretty and the world would be a less awesome place without it.  It's that this area of land is rightly called "the lungs of the world" and "the world's largest pharmacy".  Losing out on that for a few more Whoppers is a terrible trade.
Life in general, yes.  Specific species, almost certainly not.

One example of life adapting in response to humans is smaller fish stocks.  The big ones are more likely to get eaten, so there's selective pressure to be small. 
It's evolution, baby.
Some have.  Roaches.  Pigeons.  Guidos.
Currently, probably not.  Nature would bounce back from almost any kind of manmade catastrophe.  Runaway global warming would eventually reverse with no humans left to burn fossil fuels.  Even nuclear winter wouldn't last forever.  It'd be one hell of a global climate disruption for a few decades, but it'd eventually subside.

Humans don't have the power to destroy the world, just ourselves.
*lowers gun slightly*
https://m.

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2017, 05:14:05 PM »
If humans become extinct, particularly at their own hands, I will be unhappy about that.
How could you be unhappy about that, since you, too, will be gone?

Oblivion means never again having to be sad...
God Not Found
"Never criticize someone unless you've walked a mile in his shoes. Then when you criticize him at least you'll be a mile away - and you'll have his shoes."
Ray Magliozzi
"Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted at all."

Offline aitm

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2017, 07:07:19 PM »
If god were the universal "force dejour" that one new member claims, the very first thing it would do is to remove humans from the universe...so...one strike agains the universal god thingy that exists infintively beyond the quantum particles of up the kazoo.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Online Cavebear

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #13 on: April 21, 2017, 05:30:25 AM »
Evolution takes time, and climate change is acting faster than that.  My average last frost date for the gardening used to be April 22nd; now it is April 15.  2016 was the hottest global average before 2015 before 2014 and back a decade.

Refusal to see facts is an indicator of ignorance.
Atheist born, atheist bred.  And when I die, atheist dead!

Re: Should we worry about nature?
« Reply #14 on: April 21, 2017, 09:27:48 AM »
Evolution takes time, and climate change is acting faster than that.  My average last frost date for the gardening used to be April 22nd; now it is April 15.  2016 was the hottest global average before 2015 before 2014 and back a decade.

Refusal to see facts is an indicator of ignorance.
Here is Missouri our trees sprouted leaves in the middle of March. That's scary.

Evolution: Change through time. (Attributed to Charles Darwin. ;) )
We 'new atheists' have a reputation for being militant, but make no mistake  we didn't start this war. If you want to place blame put it on the the religious zealots who have been poisoning the minds of the  young for a long long time."
PZ Myers