I first came across this free online resource ” The Crash Course” developed over several years by American Chris Martenson in 2009. It has recently been updated and is suitable for upper secondary and adult learners. It is one of the best coherent introductions to ‘big picture’ thinking that I have encountered. It demonstrates how the 3Es – economy, energy and environment – are interlinked and growing exponentially; how exponential growth of the money system, an ageing human population, energy use when supplies have peaked, depletion of other resources is speeding up unsustainably. The human impact on the global environment and other species of Spaceship Earth is close to, or has already overshot, the ‘carrying capacity’ of our only planetary home. Martenson ends the course with advice on how we might follow his example and change our life-style to prepare for the consequences.
The course is provided in two condensed versions, one of 45 minutes, the second in 3 hours and 20 minutes divided into 20 short well-illustrated ‘chapters’. Its treatment of the exponential growth of the financial system to its current highly unstable state was particularly revealing to me and helped me to realise how the global financial crisis of 2008 signals even greater instabilities ahead.