Civilization Depends on Food
In his books, Guns, Germs & Steel, and Collapse, Jared Diamond makes it clear that sustainable production of excess food in any society is the key to development and the long-term ability to thrive. For an economic system to sustain our natural foundation, as opposed to destroy it, our way of relating with the environment needs to be mindful of our dependence on the ability of the earth to provide us with abundant food.<p>Jared Diamond, in Collapse, How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, identifies five factors involved in the collapse of civilizations throughout history. He list environmental damage, climate change, hostile neighbors, friendly trade partners, and how a society responds to changes in these areas. In every collapse changes in these factors have impacted a society?s ability to provide adequate food, water and shelter for survival. The societies that have survived dramatic changes in these areas have done so by adapting well. Societies that have vanished have adapted poorly.