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CAN WE CHANGE STEREOTYPES AND IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE? Marijan Jost JOST Seed-Research, Krizevci, Croatia 53rd EOQ Congress Cavtat, May 12-14, 2009.

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Presentation on theme: "CAN WE CHANGE STEREOTYPES AND IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE? Marijan Jost JOST Seed-Research, Krizevci, Croatia 53rd EOQ Congress Cavtat, May 12-14, 2009."— Presentation transcript:

1 CAN WE CHANGE STEREOTYPES AND IMPROVE THE QUALITY OF LIFE? Marijan Jost JOST Seed-Research, Krizevci, Croatia 53rd EOQ Congress Cavtat, May 12-14, 2009

2 A stereotype is a conventional and oversimplified perception, a common form of social consensus. People often base unsustainable behavior on generally accepted stereotypes. Let see twoo of them:

3 1) We live in a century of science. In the last two centuries : In the last two centuries : a number of sci. revolutions - chemistry, physics, genetics, information technology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology. a number of sci. revolutions - chemistry, physics, genetics, information technology, biotechnology, and nanotechnology. The amount of knowledge doubles every 5 years (in genetics every 2 years). The amount of knowledge doubles every 5 years (in genetics every 2 years).

4 Our generation is the 1 st in the world history to lose more knowledge than it has gained! (P.R. Mooney, 2001.) _______________________________________________ GLOBALIZATION : the forces eroding our eco-system, human cultures, and societies. GLOBALIZATION : the forces eroding our eco-system, human cultures, and societies. Almost half of the worlds languages disappeared, Almost half of the worlds languages disappeared, half of those remaining will be fergoten within the current generation. half of those remaining will be fergoten within the current generation.

5 The erosion of language means: the erosion of our traditional knowledge of the eco-system and our adaptation capacity to changes. For examples - traditional healers:

6 Along with language, the knowledge of medical preparations and treatments were lost for ever. English Plantain Plantago lanceolata Lemon balm Melissa officinalis Common wasp (Vespula vulgaris)

7 The prefix scientific for modern systems, and unscientific for traditional knowledge has less to do with knowledge and more with power. Vandana Shiva, 2000.

8 Past cultures perceived NATURE Past cultures perceived NATURE as a living and highly sensitive being, capable of responding positively as a living and highly sensitive being, capable of responding positively when handled well, but also when handled well, but also responding furiously when mistreated. responding furiously when mistreated.

9 Science has never been more powerful than it is today, and in the future it will be able to do much more than it will be allowed to do. Justus von Liebig (1847) - the inventor of chemical agriculture, when looking back on his own life wrote: I have signed against the wisdom of the creator and, justly, I have been punished. I wanted to improve his work because, in my blindness, I believed that a link in the astonishing chain of laws that govern and constantly renew life on the surface of the Earth had been forgotten. It seemed to me that weak and insignificant man had to redress this oversight. I have signed against the wisdom of the creator and, justly, I have been punished. I wanted to improve his work because, in my blindness, I believed that a link in the astonishing chain of laws that govern and constantly renew life on the surface of the Earth had been forgotten. It seemed to me that weak and insignificant man had to redress this oversight.

10 2) Development of human society starts when our ancestors began to grow plants for food. Msopotamia – Cradle of civilization

11 Irrigation was destroying the soil: 3 millennia of excessive salinization converted the fertile soil into sterile, Irrigation was destroying the soil: 3 millennia of excessive salinization converted the fertile soil into sterile, not suitable for growing any crop. not suitable for growing any crop. Plato witnessed land degradation (Phoenicia, Greece, Carthagena, and Rome) : Plato witnessed land degradation (Phoenicia, Greece, Carthagena, and Rome) : The plains that were full of rich soil are marshes now. The plains that were full of rich soil are marshes now.

12 Every nation that fell did so not only due to political reasons but because their agriculture policies failed. Every nation that fell did so not only due to political reasons but because their agriculture policies failed. N.P. Branden, In the history of civilization the ploughshare has been far more destructive than the sword. In the history of civilization the ploughshare has been far more destructive than the sword. D.J. Hillel, D.J. Hillel, 1991.

13 Some facts: The human race is destroying soil 13 times The human race is destroying soil 13 times faster than it can be created. faster than it can be created. Freshwater consumption is almost twice that Freshwater consumption is almost twice that of its annual replenishment. of its annual replenishment. For each food energy unit on our table, For each food energy unit on our table, 10 energy units were spent in production. 10 energy units were spent in production.

14 Any manipulation of soil that increases its yield is good. P. Warshall, 2000.

15 The USA – the largest food producer at the moment 11% field areas is under irigation with 11% field areas is under irigation with t woter per ha t woter per ha ading ading 2-5 t/ha of different salts 2-5 t/ha of different salts The results = salinization, The results = salinization, sterile soil sterile soil

16 USA: About 20 t of soil/hectare/year are lost by wind or water erosion. A train that could encircle the planet 24 times! W. Jackson, 1985.

17 Conclusion What is right and acceptable is what produces good consequences: What is right and acceptable is what produces good consequences: access to basic human needs, and access to basic human needs, and sustainability to protect future generations. sustainability to protect future generations.


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