GSA Annual Meeting in Denver, Colorado, USA - 2016

Paper No. 233-4
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM-6:30 PM


BOUDINOT, F. Garrett, Department of Geological Sciences, University of Colorado Boulder, Boulder, CO 80309 and LEVASSEUR, Todd, Department of Religious Studies, College of Charleston, 66 George St., Charleston, SC 29424,

How does anthropogenic climate change effect the organization of human systems? These systems, economic, political, social, and ideological, are intimately dependent on and situated within a Holocene climate, and as Earth systems deviate from this baseline, so too humans must adapt. The research to be presented investigates the social, political, economic, and religious/ethical frameworks of Transition Town Totnes (TTT) in England, the first of now hundreds of Transition Towns focused on “transitioning” human systems into a new climate regime. Results from our qualitative research can be found in the summer 2017 volume of the Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature, and Culture, “’Grow the Scorched Ground Green:’ Values and Ethics in the Transition Movement.” This presentation will highlight unpublished ethnographical observations of political and economic reform underway in TTT as a direct response to projected trends in climate and resource availability. Within TTT, changing climate and depleting resources are understood as directly connected with market capitalism, nation-state ideology, and alienation of human systems from the “wild.” Alternative forms of economic development, recreation, and resource management have been adopted by TTT, and these will be discussed critically in light of their measurable effects.