The Evolving Challenges Of Sustainability Between Ancient And Modern Civilisations

1777 Words8 Pages
The evolving challenges of sustainability between ancient and modern civilisations.

A healthy natural environment is indispensible to the wellbeing of humans everywhere in the world. From the provisioning adequate food, clean water and air, to regulating diseases, ecosystem services and human health depend on conditions of the natural environment.

Links between the natural environment and human livelihood are complex. Human resource and land use are structured by limits of the environment. Environmental determinism has in the past been a prominent theory when exploring the relationship between humans and the environment. The concept is that the evolution and development of humans, culture and society is a direct response to the
…show more content…
An example of where this has occurred is in the civilisation that once inhabited Easter Island. The history of the island has become a symbol of human induced ecological and subsequent cultural collapse. It was home to the ancient civilisation, of Polynesian decent and is most well known for the hundreds of Moai stone statues that were erected across the island by the ancient civilisation (Diamond, 2006) . It is known that the society on Easter Island was a complex society but at the time that Europeans discovered the island, the population had crashed and was almost decimated (de la Croix and Dottori, 2008). Ecological collapse is often regarded as the predominant factor, which caused the societal collapse.

The limits set by Easter Islands geography presented challenges to early human settlers. The climate is cool, windy and dry compared to other pacific islands. The cooler waters resulted in a reduced availability of fish and shellfish, one of the main dietary staples for other civilisations in the pacific at that time(Diamond, 2006). The accessibility to fresh water was also difficult. The porous volcanic soils caused the water to percolate quickly. There is only one fresh water stream on the island and few fresh water springs, offshore and ponds in volcanic craters (Diamond, 2006). Its geographical isolation in the south pacific, 3200km from the coast of Chile and 2000km from the nearest of the other south pacific island, the Pitcairn
Get Access