The eco-economy

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Book by Lester R. Brown Paris ed. 2003 of Threshold

We suggest you start with the press release which announced the 21 / 03 / 2001
What LESTER BROWN embarked on a new adventure by giving up the presidency of the world watch institute to that of the Earth Policy Institute.

The names of the institutes involved are not of easy translation into French. The World Watch institute could be "the world monitoring institute," but it is a very police translation institute whose purpose is the monitoring of the environment. And the Earth Policy Institute would become "the institute for earth policy."

The main purpose of the policy for land is working on the net for small items and promote books such as the Eco-Economy. Thus there is not only one of the chapters that shape this book, which has eté previously published as an intervention via internet.


Lester Brown argues that mainly deforestation, overgrazing and desertification, over-pumping and overfishing are overexploitation of natural capital of Earth. He also predicted that the first sign of serious problems in our relationship with the ecosystems we depend will be the soaring food prices in two years.


Each chapter consists of results of the watches made on the internet in a dashboard and on very specific topics. In this book we already summary tables pretty well as that of 136 page:

That puts next

You can find the dashboard and various subjects Eve in the annual report of the World Watch Institute. The last one to the library of the Pompidou Center is one of the 2000 year which contains the description of the discovery that the north pole has become a liquid zone, and the description of aquifers with statistics on pumping and pollution by chemical products.

What bothers some European readers in this book is that the general view Europeans are way ahead of the United States. One can cite the case of Denmark that the electrical energy consumed is already 15% from wind. There is also the problem of fiscal transfers in favor of sustainable development is achieved 3% of the European budget.

Europe is seen as much more advanced than the US in terms of tax transfer. One of the best chapter of the eco-economy is the chapter analyzing subsidies paid by the US government of wasteful activities energies.

Keep ahead of Europe.

Nevertheless 3% threshold was not exceeded anywhere as he is considered a psychological threshold.
So I'm not that Lester Brown draws from his book the eve of tables that we could be most useful. Lester Brown's remarks aim to make that America is catching up Europe, not that Europe maintains its lead.

The remark seemed to us the most important is this:

"Despite this corpus of ecological knowledge nation states have expanded economic activity at the expense of sustainable performance and delicate balances of nature. During the last half century, the expansion has multiplied by 7 the world economy has brought demand to local ecosystems beyond the sustainable yield in all countries. The fivefold increase in fish caught in the world since 1950 has increased the demand on most ocean fisheries beyond their sustainable capacity to produce fish. The sixfold in global paper demand shrunk the world's forests. Doubling herds of cattle, sheep and goats since 1950 degraded pastures and transformed into deserts "

We think it is our job in Europe to hold a table of standby on large balances. In the World Watch these statistics form a dashboard. From this tabeau edge with anti-GM should draw them too.
• The Peach
• The forest
• Livestock
• World population

This should be a Europe punish the United States if they do not meet their quota for example for fishing or deforestation. It should be to us to create the pricing system that gives US an intelligible reading what they have to change to avoid for example that again the great blackout of New York. We must not let us impose rights to pollute (see Henry Goddard) but create them and not in the areas that suit the USA but in the areas that require them to finance our own conversion.

According to Lester Brown I understand the application of the price system he hopes will be born in the "second industrial revolution in human history" economic sanction incredible waste of America does not even economically squeezed too painful for them to retain their leadership including paying a tax on their difference in oil consumption between us and them.

It's like a global banking system that would leave Washington rather or even Fort Knox Tennessee (US Federal Reserve) to come here in Europe with special drawing rights, which no longer consist in dollars, but in drills or fishing rights livestock.

A little further p178 include the need to create a tax on oil to finance the conversion to renewable energy. But this tax was seen at the time of the war in Iraq and because of the central place that occupies the hydrocarbons could be perceived and managed by the UN.

By enthusiasm I copied for you readers of our news conclude Lester Brown message of hope:

"I am often asked if it is too late. My answer is too late for what? Is it too late to save the Aral Sea? Yes ! The Aral Sea is dead; its fishery collapsed. Is it too late to save the glaciers in Glacier National Park in the United States? Without a doubt. They are already half melted, and it is almost impossible now to reverse the rise in temperature in time to save them. Is it too late to avoid the temperature rise caused by the greenhouse effect? Yes it is clear that warming due to the greenhouse effect is already underway. But is it too late to prevent runaway climate change? Maybe not if we restructure the energy economy quickly
In many specific cases, the answer is yes it is too late. But there is a broader question more fundamental: is it too late to reverse the trends that will ultimately lead to economic decline? Here I think the answer is no. Not if we're going fast enough. "

The book

Lester R. Brown, Denis Trierweiler (Translation)
Language: French Publisher: Seuil (5 September 2003) Collection: Human Economics Format: Paperback - 437 pages

If the Chinese were to consume as much paper and automobiles that Americans, China alone would use more wood and oil that the world is capable of producing. although the generalization of our growth model we know is materially impossible. But today, more an inevitable shortage of natural resources, especially specialists fear that we are still able to eat enough to make the planet unlivable. Can we escape the ecological impasse where we led a development based on the accumulation and material consumption?

Radical ecologists argue that the only way out is to get on the fast track to "decay". Do we really have to give up international transport, department stores, refrigerators and mobile phones to survive? This is really the vital issue of the 21st century. Although uncompromising on the impasses of our mode of development, this book opens an alternative to degrowth and delivers a whiff of credible optimism.

If we accept the mental revolution of rethinking the economy depending on the environment, and not the opposite, we have today the technical means necessary for sustainable development. New technologies, renewable and clean energy, city policies, reforestation, among others, are all now known tracks, experienced and mastered that draw the road to an eco-economy, ecological and sustainable economy . This book draws the map and the instructions of a road

econology of comments
Lester R. Brown is a globally recognized research on sustainable development pioneers. He founded and chaired the renowned World Watch Institute, which annually publishes The State of the Planet published in more than 30 languages. He is now president of the Earth Policy Institute.


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