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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Is getting back to nature the key to saving human civilization?

A study published in The Proceedings of the Royal Society (UK) finds that "nature exposure reduces future discounting." 

Do natural landscapes reduce future discounting in humans? finds:
An important barrier to enduring behavioural change is the human tendency to discount the future...(T)his study investigates whether exposure to natural versus urban landscapes affects people's temporal discount rates. The results of three studies...reveal that individual discount rates are systematically lower after people have been exposed to scenes of natural environments as opposed to urban environments. Further, this effect is owing to people placing more value on the future after nature exposure. The finding that nature exposure reduces future discounting—as opposed to exposure to urban environments—conveys important implications for a range of personal and collective outcomes including healthy lifestyles, sustainable resource use and population growth.
Step away from the computer. Go outside. Find a state park or forest, or a national park. If you have kids, take them. Our future depends on it.

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