Nature and society are often presented as two separate, distinct entities. Howev

Nature and society are often presented as two separate, distinct entities. However, this week we have focused on understanding the interconnections between the ‘human’ and ‘natural’ world with both shown to have lasting impacts on one another. If there is any hope in changing the direction of the world in terms of climate change, we must have a better understanding of sustainability and be able to identify our own lasting impacts on the world.
In this assignment, you will have the opportunity to delve deeper into the Anthropocene and present your perspective on the baseline debate. This is your chance to convey your own understandings of global change and what role human society ultimately plays. I am asking you to step into the shoes of a human geographer and apply your critical thinking skills to some of these larger-than-life questions. At the end of this assignment, you will calculate your own ecological footprint and reflect on how your lifestyle does or does not contribute to the lasting global impacts from human activities. Are there ways that we can lessen these impacts and create a more hopeful future?

TASK: Please answer each of the questions below. Support your answers with information provided during lecture, from your readings, and/or additional research. Reflect about what we have discussed and present your own perspective in your responses.

1) First, weigh in the baseline debate (discussed during lecture). Do you believe we are living within the Anthropocene? Why or why not? If so, make an argument for when it began.

2) The idea of the Anthropocene raises significant questions for humanity. If human activities are transforming the Earth, then one can argue that our national and individual lifestyles play a role.
To explore further, go to the Global Footprint Network website: to an external site.)Links to an external site.
Click on any country and then click on the blue button “Learn More”. On the left-hand side of the screen, select the option “Ecological Footprint (Number of Earths)” and with your mouse, follow the path of the graph – this will tell you how many earths that would needed to sustain the population based on that country’s average ecological footprint for each year. See screenshot below for example.
Investigate three countries: report the average ecological footprint for each country you have selected in the year 2022 and compare them. Which country had the highest ecological footprint? The lowest? Why do you think that is (i.e. what makes one country’s footprint different from another)?

3) Lastly, analyze your individual eco-footprint using the footprint calculator on the Global Footprint Network. (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site..
Report your ecological footprint. How does your lifestyle compare to the U.S. average (5.03)?
Were you surprised by your score?
What actions could be taken to lower your ecological footprint score?

Note: If you have any questions or having any trouble navigating any of the sites, please email me. I am happy to answer any questions you may have and/or can meet with you via Zoom and show you the activity sites.

CRITERIA: Grading Rubric for Activity #1
Completed Assignment
Please be sure to answer all questions
Points will be deducted for questions left unaddressed in your response
Content knowledge/critical thinking
In your response, you demonstrate an understanding of the baseline debate and make an effort to present your stance in this on-going debate
Your argument is supported with information from lecture and/or the assigned readings
For questions 2 and 3, you include some analysis to explain the differences between the ecological footprints
You form clear responses to the questions asked
There is a flow or organization to your thoughts presented
Points will be deducted if responses are so unclear they do not make sense (grammar and spelling mistakes will not result in a loss of points)
uploaded file for question # 2

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