What are the experts concerned about?

Reading the Quarterly Essay the other day has stirred in me many of the thoughts I came to when reading Stuart Brand’s Whole Earth Discipline a few months ago.

One of the things that Brand mentions a lot in that book is the amount of fear that is generated by people that don’t actually know what they’re talking about. He specifically talks about how the environmental movement has scared people beyond the point where they can talk rationally about important issues, such as Nuclear Power and Genetically Modified Food. See the image below, which is a screenshot from my Kindle highlights.

Whole Earth Discipline

However, when you ask the experts about these options they’re not the ones that are scared. Nuclear experts the world over have spent lifetimes understanding nuclear power and have a good weighting of the risks involved. They’re not the ones that are concerned about nuclear power. Biologists are the same with regards to GMO foods. The people that know that most, are often the least concerned. Yet we continue to disregard their advice, because more of us share the same fears. We are sheep.

One thought on “What are the experts concerned about?”

  1. That last quote is a great one. Puma were one of the first companies to do  environmental impact accounting and they measured their impact at EUR145m in 2010 http://www.sustainablebrands.com/news_and_views/articles/puma-completes-first-ever-environmental-accounting-brand-wide-impact-eur-145. TEEB are reporting on the global economic impact on trillions of dollars of environmental capital being spent each year http://www.teebweb.org/ which is described in plain English in this Yale course http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E2HFbjGQyZ8. 

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