In many ways, the Ecomodernist Manifesto is a statement that human beings can "have it both ways." As in the illustration above, we can have a vibrant, urban-based civilization coupled with our commitment to a large-scale preservation of the Natural World, in its wild and natural state. That's the claim. The eighteen authors of the Ecomodernist Manifesto, whose number includes three women, are seeking a "good" Anthropocene:
We affirm one long-standing environmental ideal, that humanity must shrink its impacts on the environment to make more room for nature, while we reject another, that human societies must harmonize with nature to avoid economic and ecological collapse.
Urbanization, aquaculture, agricultural intensification, nuclear power, and desalination are all processes with a demonstrated potential to reduce human demands on the environment, allowing more room for non-human species.
The ecomodernists call this a "decoupling" of the human world from the Natural World that sustains it:
Decoupling of human welfare from environmental impacts will require a sustained commitment to technological progress and the continuing evolution of social, economic, and political institutions alongside those changes.
Humans will always materially depend on nature to some degree. Even if a fully synthetic world were possible, many of us might still choose to continue to live more coupled with nature than human sustenance and technologies require. What decoupling offers is the possibility that humanity’s material dependence upon nature might be less destructive.
But the funniest thing was
When I was leavin’ the bay
I saw three ships a-sailin’
They were all heading my way
I asked the captain what his name was
And how come he didn’t drive a truck
He said his name was Columbus
I just said, “Good luck”