From the jewel scarab beetle to the golden mole, the natural world brims with treasure. We must agree, at a vast, global, political level, to protect it, says Katherine Rundell

Life | Comment 19 October 2022

Simone Rotella

IN 1930, John Maynard Keynes wrote a prediction for the future. By 2030, he prophesied in his essay “Economic possibilities for our grandchildren”, technological advance will have largely displaced human labour, leaving the standard of living so high as to free us to discover, for the first time, ways to live well. Then, “the love of money as a possession” will be recognised for what it is, a somewhat disgusting morbidity”. It would be seen as a “semicriminal, semi-pathological” propensity.

It is only, Keynes said, when the accumulation of wealth is no longer the central impulse of humanity that we …