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Harsha Maragh

Your post resonated with me and I have a similar outlook on how systems thinking can be applied to the environmental field. It is important for us to realize that we are a part of the problem, instead of isolating ourselves from it. Sometimes I think that environmentalists put themselves above the problem (because they are working towards fixing it), however we need to realize that we all contribute to it in some way or another. It can be hard to admit that, but I think in order for us to create a functional system we need to acknowledge both our successes and pitfalls.

Those are interesting points that you raised about the conference. I think that a lot of times, we tend to get discouraged because no matter what we do, we are still creating a carbon footprint. Hopefully we can come to a point in the (near) future where our actions create a carbon sink instead.
The conference sounds very interesting and I am looking forward to hearing about your experience when you get back!


Your post raises some great points about recognizing ourselves as elements within a system. I think this recognition can help identify societal forces that have led to the dominance of large corporations. This perspective also raises interesting questions about leverage points when trying to change the function or purpose of these systems. Do we try to change one powerful actor through regulatory measures, or do we mobilize thousands or millions of individuals to make lifestyle changes? I can see both angles. For example, the current commercial success of rooftop solar seems to depend heavily on removal of upfront cost barriers (e.g. through a leasing or financing arrangement) and favorable net metering policies, which is primarily controlled by public utilities commissions. At the same time, grassroots action was (at least temporarily) successful in halting DAPL pipeline construction and many cities are attempting to become leaders in renewable energy installation.

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