College of the Environment
College of the Environment

The most important challenge facing current and future generations of humans will be the quality of the environment and the allocation of dwindling natural resources among populations. In the face of severe challenges, we believe in the possibility of changing the trajectory of humans on the planet for the better. To that end, Wesleyan’s College of the Environment seeks to develop informed citizens who can discuss environmental issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, understand their connections to social or political issues, and derive well-formulated independent conclusions.

College of the Environment - EARTH MONTH ACTIVITIES

Tuesday, April 28, 2015 - Earth Day Rant by Professor Brian Stewart - "Stop Drilling Down!" - 7pm - Exley Science Ctr Room 150


“Drilling down” is a metaphor for probing a question ever more deeply, learning more and more in the process.  It’s what academics do, and it’s a good thing to do — right?  Only if we also take the time to synthesize what we and others have learned in an attempt to grasp the whole picture.  This talk is an attempt to do just that, examining the human situation from a physical perspective.  Drilling down is also quite literally the process by which humans have gotten into their present predicament, as the production of fossil fuels from below Earth’s surface has enabled us to increase our footprint to the point that it engulfs Earth’s biological and even geological systems, leading to the notion that we are in a new geological era, the Anthropocene.  What should we do with this knowledge?