When I grow up, I want to be a cactus

Sonora, Mexico. Ernesto Valero Thomas (EVTh)

I find questionable the anthropocentrism of the urban studies and the tendency to explain the human societies and urban development only as the result of discourses and social constructions. It is fundamental to consider that the flow of matter-energy through the biosphere of the Earth decides the environmental stability and turbulence of a specific soil. Natural phenomena and the consumption of food and raw materials are the pillars of every human settlement.

Having said so, I don’t underestimate the relevance of the “ecological ideology” or in other words, the green political thought. When I refer to the word ideology, I understood it as a form of social or political philosophy in which practical elements are as prominent as theoretical ones. It is a system of ideas that aspires both to explain the world and to change it. A sociological approach is important to frame the distinction between environmentalism and ecologism.

Environmentalism could be understood as a collective behaviour that, in their discourse and in their practice, aim at correcting destructive forms of relationship between human action and its natural environment, in opposition to the prevailing structural and institutional logic. On the other hand, Ecologism is the set of beliefs, theories and projects that consider humankind as a component of a broader ecosystem and wish to maintain the system’s stability in a dynamic evolutionary perspective. For some scholars environmentalism is ecologism in practice.

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