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  • ”Our economic activity is at war with the planet.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”The inescapable failure of a society built upon growth and its destruction of the Earth’s living systems are the overwhelming facts of our existence.”
    – George Monbiot
    Guardian columnist
  • ”This is not about whales anymore. It’s about us.”
    – Thomas Friedman
  • ”We can just as easily have an economy that is based on healing the future instead of stealing it.”
    – Paul Hawken
  • ”Our economic activity is at war with the planet.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”In the short term, we must realize that we have better ways to create jobs and build the economy than holding an everything must go sale on our precious resources.”
    – Dr. David Suzuki
  • ”Because of this civilization’s obsession with growth, its demise is 100 percent predictable. We simply cannot go on living this way.”
    – Adam Sacks
  • ”Who’s gonna stand up and save the Earth? Who’s gonna say that she’s had enough?”
    – Neil Young
  • ”If the world is saved, it will be saved by people with changed minds, people with a new vision. It will not be saved by people with the old vision but new programs.”
    – Daniel Quinn
    author: Ishmael and The Story of B
  • ”In today’s full world, resources are not only scarce but have become the limiting factor”
    – Herman Daly
    former World Bank senior economist
  • ”We can’t frack our way back to economic prosperity; nor can we unplug a coal plant, plug in a solar panel, and go on expanding population and consumption.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”I have – over the last five years – quite rapidly become a Malthusian. I have been won over by the data, and I have been won over by the logic of the math.”
    – Jeremy Grantham
    investment strategist
  • ”We can’t frack our way back to economic prosperity; nor can we unplug a coal plant, plug in a solar panel, and go on expanding population and consumption.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”As I see it, humanity needs to reduce its impact on the Earth urgently and there are three ways to achieve this: we can stop consuming so many resources, we can change our technology and we can reduce the growth of our population.”
    – Sir David Attenborough
  • ”Continual increases in population and consumption cannot continue forever on a finite planet.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”Continual increases in population and consumption cannot continue forever on a finite planet.”
    – Richard Heinberg
  • ”You don’t have a conservation policy unless you have a population policy.”
    – Paul Ehrlich
    author: The Population Bomb
  • ”Anyone who believes exponential growth can go on forever in a finite world is either a madman or an economist.”
    – Kenneth Boulding
    economist
  • ”The truth is this: the Earth cannot provide enough food and fresh water for 10 billion people, never mind homes, never mind roads, hospitals and schools.”
    – Richard Branson
  • ”Any intelligent fool can make things bigger, more complex, and more violent. It takes a touch of genius — and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction.”
    – E.F. Schumacher
    author: Small is Beautiful
  • ”We created a way of raising standards of living that we can’t possibly pass on to our children.”
    – Joe Romm
    physicist
  • ”On the one hand, it’s politically impossible to stop growth. On the other hand, it’s biophysically impossible to continue it ad infinitum. So, which impossibility is fundamentally impossible?”
    – Herman Daly
    former World Bank senior economist
  • ”A growing nation is the greatest ponzi game ever contrived.”
    – Paul Samuelson
    economist
  • ”At present we are stealing the future, selling it in the present, and calling it gross domestic product.”
    – Paul Hawken
  • ”If the world is saved, it will be saved by people with changed minds, people with a new vision. It will not be saved by people with the old vision but new programs.”
    – Daniel Quinn
    author: Ishmael and The Story of B
  • ”Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of the cancer cell.”
    – Edward Abbey
  • ”Long-term sustainability requires a materially smaller economy (the pie) shared more equitably (not equally) by a smaller population.”
    – William Rees
    Co-originator of Ecological Footprint Analysis
  • ”There will inevitably come a time that the society drastically needs to change the way it interacts with the environment, or it will lose its coherence.”
    – Sander van der Leeuw
  • ”You don’t have a conservation policy unless you have a population policy.”
    – Paul Ehrlich
    author: The Population Bomb
  • ”Population is the multiplier of everything we do wrong.”
    – Dr. Martha M. Campbell
  • ”There is a sufficiency in the world for man's need but not for man's greed.”
    – Mahatma Ghandhi
  • ”We’re going to need some kind of radical break with our past behavior if we’re to engineer a viable future.”
    – Mark Buchanan
    Bloomberg columnist
  • ”We’ve globalized an utterly untenable economic model of hyperconsumerism. It’s now successfully spreading across the world, and it’s killing us.”
    – Naomi Klein
  • ”I have – over the last five years – quite rapidly become a Malthusian. I have been won over by the data, and I have been won over by the logic of the math.”
    – Jeremy Grantham
    investment strategist
  • ”We can share the earth and take care of it together, rather than trying to possess it, destroying the beauty of life in the process.”
    – Dalai Lama
  • ”The free-market fundamentalists will tell you that more growth, more stuff and 9 billion people going shopping is the best we can do. They’re wrong. We can be more. We can be much more.”
    – Paul Gilding
    author: The Great Disruption
  • ”A growing nation is the greatest ponzi game ever contrived.”
    – Paul Samuelson
    economist

World Environment Day – We Saw It Coming But We Still Bought It

Today is World Environment Day. The United Nations established the day and informs us it’s the most important day for encouraging worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment. It strikes me as odd the theme for this year’s World Environment Day is the illegal trade in wildlife. Themes like this are woefully inadequate in the face of today’s pressing crises, amounting to little more than rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. Yes, our world’s biodiversity is critical, but illegal trade is a tiny fraction of even that problem. The real problem is the juggernaut of never-ending expansion in the scale of the human footprint. We are laying siege, not just to wildlife, but to the entirety of our “environment.”

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$ tattoo on pregnant woman

Mother’s Day Economics

Sunday is Mothers Day, but troubling economic news makes it difficult to celebrate motherhood this holiday. There are too few mothers! The most recent alarming news: Teen birth rates in the U.S. are dropping precipitously.

“Fewer Babies Having Babies” proclaimed the Newsweek headline last week. According to the Center for Disease Control, teen births declined over 40% from 2006 to 2014. Some might think this is good news. Teens, and their parents, come to mind. After all, teens are ill prepared to become parents, and unplanned pregnancies often lead to an unexpected round two of parenthood for ambushed grandparents. For teens, parenthood interferes with attending submarine races, prom night, and finishing school, not to mention Spring break in Fort Lauderdale.

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The Return of ‘Limits to Growth’?

By Suzanne York, www.howmany.org.

It’s shocking, but a mainstream media outlet has actually mentioned the idea of limits to growth and limits of nature.  The New York Times, no less, has run a front-page story on the drought in California, invoking the concept of limits, in an article titled “California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth.”

The drought, now in its fourth year, has prompted the state government to announce measures to reduce water consumption.  That in itself isn’t shocking, given the increasing severity of California’s water situation, but what is surprising is that it took this long to enact serious measures.

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Partial Advice is No Advice At All

Elephant, with words "ignore me" painted on Guest Post by Karen I. Shragg Ed.d.

A new global analysis by University of Minnesota ecologists David Tilman and Michael Clark provides some interesting food for thought. Their study says over the next 35 years the populations of the world will try to emulate the western diet in their journey towards development. According to their analysis, this will inspire everything to go south.

The climate change effect of the spread of the typical American meat-based diet will make us collectively sicker and our environment much worse, too. Because cattle are so costly in fossil fuels, the study forecasts that the diet changes alone will make the climate that much more unstable, and they recommend people adopt a vegetarian diet OR follow the Mediterranean fish-based diet. They say that will make us healthier, too.

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Free Screening of GrowthBusters on Black Friday 2014

Black Friday Coming Soon This Friday, the 28th of November, is Black Friday, what’s become a national holiday celebrating consumption. As much of the rest of the world strives to emulate the over-consuming ways of the U.S., the Black Friday shopping tradition is spreading around the world. Especially in the U.S., all eyes are on how much money shoppers spend on the day after Thanksgiving (and even on the eve of Thanksgiving now, as retailers try to wring every penny they can from our wallets). If we “consumers” don’t spend more this year than last, it’s considered a failure.

Last year I wrote a thorough essay about all that’s wrong with this tradition; there’s no sense repeating it. Read it for yourself. You may want to share it with your shop-a-holic friends.

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