I’m going to take you back to two key evolutionary innovations that happened early on in our lineage that set us off on a trajectory distinct from that of our closest living relatives, the African great apes, chimpanzees, and gorillas.
Geologists are trying to recognize the magnitude of this change by giving our epoch a special name: “the Anthropocene,” the age of humans. Some people find this depressing because they think that the Anthropocene is inevitably a bad thing. But it’s not. Because we aren’t bacteria. Those brains that give us the ability to harness energy also give us the ability to shape the way the planet is transformed. We can design our future.