Look what all that throughput gets us . . .
Modernization has catalyzed the release of carbon from its SOURCES – stored in the earth, for example, as coal or trees which we burn for fuel or to clear land for agriculture – and that release is currently overwhelming the Earth’s exquisite SINKS – our oceans, our forests, and our air.
So, let’s go back a single post to OneThing36, to that slightly geeky word throughput, what Donella Meadows describes as a kind of speed limit – the flow rates at which the Earth can meet our acquisitive demands. At some point, the sources will run low or the sinks will overflow (or both) . . . and that will reduce the throughput either by “human choice or by . . . unpleasant natural feedbacks.”
Consider the Canadian tar sands and the Keystone Pipeline . . . an exceedingly clear illustration of SOURCE – THROUGHPUT – SINK.
- OneThing36: knowing “throughput” fundamentally changes how you see (itsallonething.com)
- Sink to source – the loss of biodiversity’s greatest ecosystem service (conservationbytes.com)
- Blue Carbon: The Role of Oceans in Climate Change (thinkprogress.org)