Think 2

The chapters and segments for this week’s reading assignment almost all described preparatory and contingency plans regarding global climate change. The military, think tanks, corporations, and governments have been creating these plans for impending doom that have failed to set us on a different path and outline a bleak future with every sort of conflict associated with the environment. With continued speculation on terming security and its discursive relevance to the subject, more relevant, I argue, is the Capitalocene. Buxton and Hayes’ response to the Anthropocene (epoch marked by humanity shaping the entire planet’s ecosystem, oceans, and atmosphere with nothing untouched) the Capitalocene acknowledges that the responsibility of destruction lies with power configurations and capital rather than all of humanity. Essentially, we must consider the actors and the perpetrators with regard to the victims and those who suffer for the misdeeds of others.

Even as the Pentagon has produced publications with concrete information and solutions to the grave issues, both in the international and domestic arena, these problems take a backseat to politics, state issues, and lack of cooperation between the players, as explained by Maas et. al. Even when a corporation like the Shell company may originally support a more promising outcome, between “Blueprint” and “Scramble” the former permits success but relies on inadequate technology and would still have a corporation-friendly outcome. This example outlined exactly how seriously global players treat environmental degradation. Even as indirect conflicts have negatively impacted the West already, almost no progress has been made on the global scale.

In Maas’ attempt to promote environmental peace-building, the article suggested a solution that remains distant. The lack of concrete results in existence that should be used in this sort of article only does more to underline the near impossibility of an effectively sustainable future. While I as a citizen and scholar appreciate the positive outlook, the potential for an improved future full of cooperation and peace-building cannot hold up to the other articles’ end-of-the-world publications and Parenti’s countless examples of ways in which climate change with the help of large corporations has already negatively affected the world in myriad ways.

Overall these readings reinforced my preconceived ideas about global climate change, its serious effects, and the lack of movement towards solutions. I would like to see more examples of why debates over what Environmental Security Studies is comprised of are continually relevant and ways in which my negative assumptions can be disproved – with more concreteness than Mass could provide.

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