Natural Capital

This post comes to you from EcoArtScotland

Does the (natural) world exist to provide ‘services’ for human beings?  Should we attempt to justify the importance of bees or trees or rivers or mountains or bacillus acidophilus in terms of an ecosystems services analysis, i.e. what services they provide to us?

Alternatively should we analyse what services we provide to ecosystems?  This question was raised by Shai Zakai recently during a discussion about ecosystem services.  It seems to focus precisely the problem with the ecosystems services approach, which is that it leaves us as the beneficiary of the services, limiting our responsibility to those we can comprehend.

For some useful background on this subject see the Arts and Environment network at CIWEM resource on Natural Capital, and in particular their introductory document From Microbes to Mountains.

ecoartscotland is a resource focused on art and ecology for artists, curators, critics, commissioners as well as scientists and policy makers. It includes ecoartscotland papers, a mix of discussions of works by artists and critical theoretical texts, and serves as a curatorial platform.
It has been established by Chris Fremantle, producer and research associate with On The Edge Research, Gray’s School of Art, The Robert Gordon University. Fremantle is a member of a number of international networks of artists, curators and others focused on art and ecology.
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Dance Exchange looks at the impact of infrastructure and power in 500 Miles/500 Stories

It’s April which means the Dance Exchange’s 500-Mile Walk is finally here! On April 10 a team from Dance Exchange will walk from DC to the mountains of West Virginia to trace the distances traveled by the resources that power her home. Along the way, they’ll connect with communities to tell, hear, and collect some 500 stories.

They want you to be part of the journey and are buildinga new website to collect and share stories from the trail (and far beyond!). It will launch at our How To Lose a Mountain interactive performance at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center (for more information on this event, click here.

They’ve also teamed up with United States Artists to create a way for you to donate towards our long-distance journey. Receive exclusive, amazing perks like postcards and photos from the walk, even your very own deck of 500 Miles/500 Stories playing cards for making a contribution.

Where you can join the journey