Cities create environmental problems as they grow, of course, but they also generate innovations to solve those problems, such as catalytic converters to reduce air pollution, and vaccines to keep epidemic diseases in check.
Nothing symbolizes this more in the modern age than nuclear power. Robert Stone's provocative new documentary Pandora's Promise takes a surprising look at this most controversial of energy technologies.
"In short, we should bring back extinct animals for the same reasons we protect endangered species: to preserve biodiversity, to restore diminished ecosystems, to advance the science of preventing extinctions and to undo harm that humans have caused in the past."
By 2050, we need to figure out how to not only feed but also nourish the three billion new people who will be joining the seven billion of us who are already here on the planet. And we need to figure out how to do this as effectively, ethically and as environmentally sensibly as possible.
In this video, Shelter editor Lloyd Kahn shows us a rare first issue of the Whole Earth Catalog, takes us for a tour of his homestead and gives us a sneak peek of his upcoming book Tiny Homes: Simple Shelter.
So, again, how permanent are digital media? Just about as permanent as we want their contents to be. Whole dynasties may be lost, as Shelley's "Ozymandius" illustrates, but @Dadboner is an example of a literary artifact worth preserving.
Between basic economics, security, national competitiveness (the push to a clean economy creates jobs), the logic for a distributed, non-nuclear, non-fossil-fuel grid and transportation network seems very strong.
Earth Days, the new film that opens this weekend from acclaimed documentarian Robert Stone, is being promoted as a history of the environmental movement in the United States. But it's more of a road trip, really.