How Does the Tragedy Of the Commons Relate to Sustainability?

C O N T E N T S:


  • The tragedy of the commons, or social dilemma, is a dynamic where it is in the best interest of each individual to overuse a resource unless everyone else also does likewise.(More…)


  • If such a commons is colonialized – which today would mean to be reduced to a mere resource by industrial agriculture – the emotional needs of the people involved – belonging, meaning, identity – can no longer be fulfilled.(More…)


How Does the Tragedy Of the Commons Relate to Sustainability?
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The tragedy of the commons, or social dilemma, is a dynamic where it is in the best interest of each individual to overuse a resource unless everyone else also does likewise. [1] The tragedy of the commons has proven to be a core dynamic within the management of many socio-ecological systems around the world, from the management of forestry to pasture and in particular fisheries many of which have collapsed due to overexploitation and lack of solutions to the social dilemma. [1] The tragedy of the commons is essentially a failure of trust, coordination and social institutions. [1] According to the IPCC’s 2014 assessment report, “Mitigation is a public good; climate change is a case of the ‘ tragedy of the commons ‘. [2] That we are engaged in a mass suicide, taking many other species with us, is not all an accident, not all a tragedy of the commons. [3] In fact there’s no such thing as a tragedy of the commons — there’s a tragedy of privatization. [3] Once in class when I mentioned the tragedy of the commons, the entire class gave me a blank look. [4]

To depict the thesis of the tragedy of the commons–that communal resources will run out if individuals take too large a share–photo illustrator Hugh Kretschmer shows one man enjoying a drink and hoarding all the water in sight, in a landscape that’s been drained of it. [5] Garrett Hardin defined “the tragedy of the commons? as many individuals acting in their own self-interest without regard for society. [5] I explain that the exercise was inspired by an ecologist named Garrett Hardin and an address that he delivered 50 years ago this summer, describing what he called “the tragedy of the commons.” [5]

The tragedy is that even with the advantage of our thinking power, we are in a similar situation to Paenibacillus sp. bacteria. [6]

I have been writing this blog for more than six years using basically the same methodology: trying to connect current events to some basic science, focusing on anthropogenic (human-influenced) climate change in a way that people with different backgrounds can relate to. [6] Am I self-plagiarizing here? How many of you actually went to the original blog that I linked to in the beginning to check what I wrote there and compare? Those of you who did so found that while I am repeating the abstract here, the long section that directly relates to my own writing appears here for the first time. [6] High and low-income countries have different needs, which directly relate to their degrees of industrialization and the fractions of their workforces employed in agriculture ( March 27, 2018 blog). [6] The next blog will focus on aspects and areas of the oceans that relate to livelihood and the vulnerabilities of individual countries. [6] The biggest immediate impact of climate change that we are feeling relates directly to the subsequent disturbance of the water cycle. [6] The first three targets relate to drinking water supply and sanitation. [7]

Traditional and contemporary examples add to an endless number of human ways to relate to the Other, social and natural, and defy the artificial borders of animate and inanimate. [8] We are suffering because our conceptualization of the world itself allows commodification as the sole way to relate to it. [8]


If such a commons is colonialized – which today would mean to be reduced to a mere resource by industrial agriculture – the emotional needs of the people involved – belonging, meaning, identity – can no longer be fulfilled. [8] The commons cultivates identity, meaning, ritual and culture among people as they work with resources to meet their everyday needs. In the process “resources” are retransformed into things that are inflected with personal and community meaning. [8]

The emotional work of caring for a commons, however, is both an ecological necessity and a material reality, as well as it is a psychological need. [8] We need the affirmation of belonging and a willingness to engage in an ongoing negotiation within a reality that we recognize as a commons. [8] This essay challenges this belief by recovering the dimension that has been forgotten since the Enlightenment and has not yet been rediscovered in the Anthropocene – the radical philosophical practice and perspective of the commons, without which the relationship of humans to reality cannot be understood. [8] Cutting living subjects off from participating in the commons of reality and its mixture of practices and emotions, objects and aspects of meaning, is destructive in another serious respect: It blinds us to the nature of enclosure itself. [8] Fortunately, the social practices of creating and maintaining a commons – commoning – offer excellent opportunities for blending the subjective and objective, humanity and “nature,” and for overcoming the many other dualisms that deny our creative aliveness. [8] Systematic thinking joined with the lived practice of commons – commoning – are based on a poetics of relations. [8] The post Patterns of Commoning: Reality as Commons, A Poetics of Participation for the Anthropocene appeared first on P2P Foundation. [8] However, the process of commoning – and this is true of the commons of reality, too – is anything but devoid of rules. [8] Visit the Patterns of Commoning and Commons Strategies Group websites for more resources. [8] The dilemma arises when members of a group share a common good, such as an ecosystem, when this common good is rivalrous and non-excludable, meaning that anyone can use the resource but there is a finite amount of the resource available and it is therefore prone to overexploitation. [1] The commons of reality is a matrix of relationships through which aliveness is unfolding in ecosystems and history. [8] In the relationship between a society and its ecosystem, there is invariably going to be some commons in the form of ecosystem functions that are required to deliver the ecosystems services, such as clean water so that people can go fishing or clean air. [1] When everyone chooses this path, the common resource is overtaxed, and societies end up with overharvesting, water shortages, or climate change. [5] A challenge in these negotiations has been the insistence by some states that MGRs in the Area should, like mineral resources, fall under the common heritage of mankind principle, which would require that their exploitation be subject to some form of benefit sharing. [9] An international legal regime exists to govern the exploitation and benefit sharing of mineral resources in the Area, which are considered the common heritage of mankind. [9] An analogy for this approach can be made with fisheries, which is a common, limited resource. [2] An ontology that describes reality through the lens of the commons, in other words, makes it possible to focus on aliveness as both a conceptual idea and experience. [8] The hypothesis of the Anthropocene, namely that “man and nature are one today,” can be considered in a meaningful way only if it acknowledges a theory of reality as a commons. [8] For this reason, conceiving of “nature” as a commons of living entities is also a way of understanding ourselves anew. [8] It is this stance of negotiating, adapting and enduring that has determined the way in which humans have dealt with the commons since time immemorial. [8] Time of use metering is a common way to motivate electricity users to reduce their peak load consumption. [2] A commons is a way of entering into relationships with the world, both materially and conceptually. [8] As a poetics of relationships defines the individual reality, and a poetics of relationships can be understood as a commons, reality appears to the individual as a commons. [8] Viewed in this light, reality is revealed as a commons of those perceiving and those perceived, and their ongoing interactions. [8] I argue that reality, from which we are descended and through which we experience and engender ourselves, is itself a commons that must be understood and connected to as such. [8] In regarding reality as commons, we do not resolve the contradictions of existence by reducing them to one aspect – only mind, only matter, only discourse, only market. [8] In areas like Norway, Brazil, and Quebec that have abundant hydroelectricity, electric heat and hot water are common. [2] In commons, humankind does not hold arbitrary sway as a ruler, but as an attentive subject in a network of relationships. [8] Every commons is a rhizome – a material and informal network of living connections which constantly changes as it mutates and evolves. [8] Human culture has the opportunity to shape the world as a commons as it participates in the web of interdependent living things, thus making the world more real. [8] It is why social critics like Ivan Illich embraced the commons as a path for the spiritual reintegration of people in the face of a dehumanizing modernity. [8] The artful blending of the social, moral and physical into an integrated commons is what gives the commons paradigm such durability and power. [8] The CarbFix project couples with carbon capture and storage in power plants to turn carbon dioxide into stone in a relatively short period of two years, addressing the common concern of leakage in CCS projects. [2] The challenge that Garrett Hardin described 50 years ago remains today: Our survival depends on each of us and all of us conserving the commons. [5] The Commitment to Development Index is one attempt to analyze rich country policies taken to reduce their disproportionate use of the global commons. [2] “Our Common Future, Chapter 2: Towards Sustainable Development – A/42/427 Annex, Chapter 2 – UN Documents: Gathering a body of global agreements”. [7] Common recommendations include lowering home heating and cooling usage, burning less gasoline, supporting renewable energy sources, buying local products to reduce transportation, turning off unused devices, and various others. [2] For a commons is always an embodied, material, perceptible, existential and symbolic negotiation of individual existence through the Other and the whole. [8] Even people raised in that modernist cosmo-logic of globalized industry and commerce are building commons that nourish an ontology of creative aliveness. [8] The commons helps move in this direction because it honors “affective labor” as a critical force binding people to each other, to natural systems and to earlier and future generations. [8] The commons describes an ontology of relations that is at the same time existential, economic and ecological. [8] Thinking in the categories of the commons actualizes an ontology that, while not fundamentally new in Western thinking, has been underestimated and suppressed for a long time. [8] With the industrial revolution, many of these traditional socio-cultural institutions were disintegrated, and the modern nation state became the new form of social contract that has in many ways taken over this function providing the social institutions for managing the commons. [1] Traditional societies through their close interaction with their local ecosystem and strong social and cultural integration were able to live sustainable for prolonged periods using traditional social institutions to manage the commons. [1] Significant strides have been made in increasing life expectancy and reducing some of the common killers associated with child and maternal mortality. [7] Our existence in an ecosphere suffused with life is part of a vast commons even before individuality can be perceived. [8] Businesses may recognize the abundance that can be produced through common-based peer production, which necessarily draws upon people’s creative aliveness – but they are structurally designed to enclose the commons because of their ontological commitment to the subject/object division which is perfectly executed by money. [8]

This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial license, which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, so long as the resultant use is not for commercial advantage and provided the original work is properly cited. [9] This item is offered under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license You may reuse this item for non-commercial purposes as long as you provide attribution and offer any derivative works under a similar license. [4] Material on this page is offered under a Creative Commons license unless otherwise noted below. [4] Text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License ; additional terms may apply. [7]

While Patreon, License Zero, Tidelift, and Open Collective are different approaches to providing the infrastructure for sustainability, ultimately someone has to pay to make all that infrastructure useful. [10] We can use the Ocean Health Index for this purpose but as yet, it suffers some problematic deficiencies – namely that it focuses on territorial waters and its understanding of “sustainability” is driven by human needs rather than human deeds. [6] Last week’s blog about the Ocean Health Index stressed the importance of including the sustainability of human impacts in any discussions about ocean health (this accounted for about 50% of the indexing). [6]

This is probable only if one does not factor in the ongoing Light Water Reactor Sustainability Program, created to permit the extension of the life span of the USA’s 104 nuclear reactors to 60 years. [2]

Sustainability pioneer Wolfgang Sachs observes, “At first, the term “Anthropocene? expressed the diagnosis of anxiety. [8] Ultimately though, we need to change the culture toward sustainability. [10] They proposed an index anchored on a popular definition of sustainability and mostly measured in the territorial waters of individual countries. [6] Another indirect method of encouraging uses of renewable energy, and pursue sustainability and environmental protection, is that of prompting investment in this area through legal means, something that is already being done at national level as well as in the field of international investment. [2] It’s unfortunately very early days for open source sustainability. [10] If we all do our part, we can help to sustain one of the great intellectual movements humanity has ever created, and end the oxymoron of open source sustainability forever. [10] Open source sustainability has been nothing short of an oxymoron. [10]

As I?ve said before, given the record of the war on terrorism spreading terrorism, the war on drugs spreading drugs, and the war on poverty increasing poverty, I would strongly support a war on prosperity, sustainability, and joy. [3] Companies should adopt sustainable practices and publish sustainability reports. [7] Beyond the bottom line: integrating sustainability into business and management practice. [7]

Yohe et al. (2007) assessed the literature on sustainability and climate change. [2] In (book chapter): Perspectives on climate change and sustainability. [2]

RANKED SELECTED SOURCES(10 source documents arranged by frequency of occurrence in the above report)

1. (36) Patterns of Commoning: Reality as Commons, A Poetics of Participation for the Anthropocene | The Commons

2. (11) Climate change mitigation – Wikipedia

3. (9) ClimateChangeFork | A blog about climate change, education, and the search for solutions in adaptation and mitigation

4. (7) Socio-Ecological Systems Complexity Labs

5. (6) Sustainable Development Goals – Wikipedia

6. (5) Open source sustainability TechCrunch

7. (5) What a Simple Psychological Test Reveals About Climate Change

8. (3) Altruism and Sadism in Public Policy

9. (3) The Tragedy of the Commons Homework

10. (3) Corporate control and global governance of marine genetic resources | Science Advances