Introduction: The Island Analogy
This truly extraordinary point in Earth’s history has recently been categorized as a distinct geological time period–the Anthropocene–a period of significant human impact on the planet. Our species is unique relative to all other life-forms in that we have a developed sense of consciousness. Not only do our activities dominate the Earth’s ecosystems, but we are aware of it. As individuals, we are conscious of a past, of a future, and even of our own inevitable mortality.