In general, species adapt to ecosystems in which they have greater chances of prospering, and abandon areas that are not conductive to survival and reproduction. Arctic species, for example, have specialized for harshly cold conditions and thereby made it very hard for themselves to live in desert or even temperate biomes. These are common trade-offs that occur with natural selection, and somewhat to be expected. But there are species in certain areas of the world that are not indigenous and still survive in those ecosystems. In many cases, these species have advantages over native ones and flourish. Termed “invasive species,” these organisms often replace autochthonous populations to the point of extermination (one could argue that humans are the ultimate invasive species), causing irrevocable damage to the original habitats.
John Dryzek defines the Promethean discourse in his book “The Politics of the Earth.” The metaphorical name comes from the ancient Greek myth of Prometheus, who stole fire from the gods; fire represents technology and the potential it gives for humans’ improvement. Prometheans are those who approve of a free market that unleashes human ingenuity on the world’s “unlimited” resources, propose liberalization, decentralization, and growth to improve human livelihood around the planet. Every one of these prescriptions, however helpful to humans, is practically a different form of poison for ecosystems in that they tend to greatly increase the numbers of invasive species around the world, contributing to rampant biodiversity loss and environmental degradation.
On the topic of invasive species, I consider myself a Survivalist, or one who believes that Continue reading