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The problem is MONEY. As long as there is money to be made our environment will be little more than fodder. Our society/economy is based off of the destruction of nature and the consumption of resources.
Originally posted by NthOther
A big part of the problem is the idea that human beings and nature are separate things; the idea that nature needs a "protector"--something external--and we are it (the ultimate arrogance). But there is really no distinction. Nature is us. We are nature. We're protecting ourselves from... ourselves? That never works out well.
Rather than worrying about "protecting" (controlling) nature, we should simply identify those aspects of our own lives that are obviously in conflict with the "natural order" and change them. We have to start within ourselves, because we're never going to literally "fix the planet", like a mechanic tuning up an engine. That kind of thinking is what got us into so much trouble with our environment in the first place. Tinkering, manipulating, controlling, protecting, destroying.
I suppose there are those who would want to legislate this natural morality into our social consciousness, but that's probably for another thread (and a really horrible idea).