"System change is now inevitable. Either because we do something about it, or because we will be hit by climate change. '...

"We need to develop economic models that are fit for purpose. The current economic frameworks, the ones that dominate our governments, these frameworks... the current economic frameworks, the neoclassical, the market frameworks, can deal with small changes. It can tell you the difference, if a sock company puts up the price of socks, what the demand for socks will be. It cannot tell you about the sorts of system level changes we are talking about here. We would not use an understanding of laminar flow in fluid dynamics to understand turbulent flow. So why is it we are using marginal economics, small incremental change economics, to understand system level changes?"

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It's All Connected

While we consider the complex threads of causality, like those from earthquake to tsunami to infrastructure damage to perverse increases in the value of the yen, revealed by the recent tragedies, we realize how tightly coupled everything is.

This image has been much passed around the earth science community in Texas. This one is the depth of the local aquifer in Central Texas. The compression wave from the earthquake is strikingly obvious as it passes by, affecting the porosity of the aquifer.

After a massive quake, the whole earth rings like a bell. It's all connected; the lines we draw between "us" and "them", between "here" and "there" are just convention and ritual, empty ceremony.

1 comment:

adelady said...

Now that really is fascinating.

Perhaps when all this fuss is over, successfully I hope, someone will collect a whole heap of these records to show the variations in the effects at lots of places. With lots of different geology. With lots of interesting impacts.

Just the sort of thing to flesh out some popular science documentaries and ignite general interest in science.