If you Google cumulative effects, you’ll typically find a definition from environmental impact assessment legislation or practitioner guides that will lead you to believe they are something negative to be minimized or mitigated. That’s #BusinessAsUsual and it’s inadequate at best because it’s only a portion of the story. This has contributed to the ongoing conflict and argument over new land use developments like new #pipelines.
There has to be a better way - and there is.
We start with the understanding that all things are connected within systems. Indigenous people have known this for millennia and the application of this knowledge has been a big part of why the human race has been successful. We know that we live in and are a part of thousands of systems that are constantly changing and interacting and the world that we experience is the Cumulative Effect of all those interactions.
Today, Increasing resource scarcity and new disruptors like climate change are creating significant uncertainty about what our collective future will look like. And we know that the choices we make today will directly influence the outcomes of the future.
So, how do we go about planning for an unpredictable future with less than a full understanding of the dynamics at play?
History has proven time and again that the best solutions emerge from a diverse group of individuals with different experience, expertise and perspective. Collaborative exploration is a powerful and efficient way to not only anticipate possible futures, but more importantly to develop innovative resilience strategies so we can adapt to change we know is inevitable, but not precisely predictable.
The CE Analytic Cumulative Effects Conference 2019 is a deliberate effort to bring together that diversity of knowledge and perspective to discuss, share and learn.