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8 Responses

  1. Denial of emergent and convergent global threats by informed leaders and delaying tactics by their many minions are threatening life as we know it and the integrity of Earth today.
    We are not seeing colleagues speak out loudly, clearly and often to report that The Human Species' Population Bomb is Exploding NOW, as I did in 2005.
    The deafening silence of too many reputable scientists and the shrill voices of many too many political hacks and ideologues are symptomatic of deeply distressing problems. Top rank scientists in many places are either being subjected to venal pressures and, in some cases, driven out of "politically incorrect" areas of research or else their positions and programs are cut out of the government's budget. Low rank scientists, willing to subscribe to whatsoever is politically convenient and economically expedient, remain in place.
    By recklessly funding such entities like the Department of Defense and related

  2. R. Gates says:

    Once more, well said. Greed and selfishness are the rule of the day for the power elite. They will not release power and choose to change until forced to by abrupt and terrible shocks to the system. Voluntarily releasing your stanglehold on the reins of power so that a greener, saner, and more organic future can take over is not going to happen. The rude shocks are coming, and have already started.
    Here's the sad thing: This planet CAN support the numbers of humans we now have, but our lifestyles and habits would need to change most dramatically. Many of us are voluntarily changing our lives, but until the power elite embrace the necessary changes, the masses will continue to consume the planet like locusts.
    R. Gates

  3. Dear R. Gates,
    Let us see if I understand your point of view.
    Would it be correct that the accrual of unwarranted wealth, undeserved social status, unseemly perks, unending possessions of every kind and other conspicuous advantages by individuals in high and powerful positions inside and outside government present many too many people with temptations that are simply irresistible?
    Thanks to the clear vision of people like you, perhaps it is not too difficult to discern what everyone knows, what has been repeatedly stated loudly and clearly by honorable leaders in the human community through history: the avaricious, endless, insatiable desire to accumulate money and hoard resources is the root of all human evilbeing and evildoing.

  4. R. Gates says:

    I think that about sums it up quite nicely, yes.
    R. Gates

  5. Dear R. Gates,
    If you and I are sharing understandings that are on a track which is somehow correct, then it is safe to say that the family of humanity will be challenged as never before.
    It is in a moment of awareness like this one that I feel it important to come forward with a proposal of some kind. This is just one of a number of proposals that will be promulgated soon enough, I trust. What follows comes to us from people who are realistically and courageously beginning to make the choice of taking a not yet travelled, high road to sustainable economic development. This proposal could surely be an adequate example of the kind of thought, judgment and action that will be needed as the human community goes forward to establish a sustainable future world order.
    August 8, 2008
    Kelly Boatman, Chair, City of Bloomington Environmental Commission
    (812) 287-0031
    The City of Bloomington Environmental Commission has adopted a position statement and completed a report to increase awareness of growth and sustainable development. The statement, "Position of the City of Bloomington Environmental Commission on Economic Growth in the United States" is modeled on similar statements issued by the United States Society for Ecological Economics and over 40 other groups inspired by the work of the Center for the Advancement of a Steady State Economy (CASSE). The statement advocates a steady state economy in which resource consumption and waste production are maintained within the environment's capacity to regenerate resources and assimilate waste, emphasizing development as a qualitative, rather than quantitative, process.
    "This position statement acknowledges that the human economy is contained within, and dependent on, a finite and depletable natural environment," said Environmental Commission member Heather Reynolds. "Ever-increasing economic growth ultimately leads to resource consumption and waste production at rates greater than can be sustained by nature." A steady state economy for the U.S. will depend in no small part on the efforts made by communities across the nation to achieve sustainable local economies. The first step is awareness and acceptance of the concepts, both of which it is hoped that the position statement will foster.
    The report, "An Examination of the Costs Associated with Residential Growth in Bloomington" is modeled after similar studies in other communities. Such studies have shown that infrastructure costs to support growth often outpace the benefits of that growth to the city. A sustainable approach to development would mean ensuring long-term benefits outweigh costs.
    The Commission's report focuses on the City of Bloomington's capital expenditures and how these expenditures are impacted by residential growth. The report is not intended to define the full costs of growth in Bloomington, but rather to illustrate that there are substantial costs incurred by the City to provide necessary infrastructure to residences. To fully examine costs, further analysis of not only facilities and infrastructure, but also social and environmental impacts is needed.
    "The Commission's report illustrates that the City incurs real costs that are associated with residential growth," said Environmental Commission member Mike Litwin. "The Commission would like to see the costs of growth balanced against the benefits and incorporated into the decision-making process in order to promote sustainable development in Bloomington." The report and position statement are available on the Environmental Commission website at
    Position of the City of Bloomington Environmental Commission on Economic Growth in the United States
    (Adapted from the Position of the United States Society for Ecological Economics on Economic Growth in the United States and adopted on May 22, 2008 in a 4-2-0 vote following two years of discussion.)
    1) Economic growth, as understood by most professional economists, policy officials and private citizens, is an increase in the production and consumption of goods and services, and;
    2) Economic growth occurs when there is an increase in the multiplied product of population and per capita consumption, and;
    3) Economic growth has long been a primary policy goal of U.S. society and government because of the belief that it leads to an enhanced quality of life, and;
    4) Economic growth is usually measured by increasing gross domestic product (GDP), although this is an incomplete indicator of quality of life that excludes the equity of income distribution, other social factors such as physical health and level of crime, and ecological health, and;
    5) The U.S. economy grows as an integrated whole consisting of agricultural, extractive, manufacturing, and services sectors (and the supporting infrastructure) that requires physical inputs of non-renewable resources, land and water, and that produces wastes, and;
    6) Economic growth occurs in a finite and depletable biophysical context, and;
    7) Continuing non-renewable resource-intensive economic growth is having unintended damaging consequences for ecosystems and human societies

  6. R. Gates says:

    I had no idea such position statements were being drafted! I need to pass this on to my local community.
    This is exactly the way forward (if we are to have a way at all).
    R. Gates

  7. Dear R. Gates,
    Thanks for your confirmation and thanks.
    Your dedication encourages the emergence of an unexpected boldness from within me. What follows is another proposal. Ideas for strategies to achieve sustainability are springing to life like flowers in a garden.
    July 10, 2008
    Ecuadorian Assembly Approves Constitutional Rights for Nature
    On July 7, the 130-member Ecuador Constitutional Assembly, elected countrywide to rewrite the country's Constitution, voted to approve articles that recognize rights for nature and ecosystems.
    “If adopted in the final constitution by the people, Ecuador would become the first country in the world to codify a new system of environmental protection based on rights,” says Thomas Linzey, Executive Director of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund.
    {The following clauses will be included in the constitution that will be submitted to a countrywide vote, to be held forty-five (45) days after Assembly finishes its work later this month.}
    Chapter: Rights for Nature
    Art. 1. Nature or Pachamama, where life is reproduced and exists, has the right to exist, persist, maintain and regenerate its vital cycles, structure, functions and its processes in evolution.
    Every person, people, community or nationality, will be able to demand the recognitions of rights for nature before the public organisms. The application and interpretation of these rights will follow the related principles established in the Constitution.
    Art. 2. Nature has the right to an integral restoration. This integral restoration is independent of the obligation on natural and juridical persons or the State to indemnify the people and the collectives that depend on the natural systems.
    In the cases of severe or permanent environmental impact, including the ones caused by the exploitation on non-renewable natural resources, the State will establish the most efficient mechanisms for the restoration, and will adopt the adequate measures to eliminate or mitigate the harmful environmental consequences.
    Art. 3. The State will motivate natural and juridical persons as well as collectives to protect nature; it will promote respect towards all the elements that form an ecosystem.
    Art. 4. The State will apply precaution and restriction measures in all the activities that can lead to the extinction of species, the destruction of the ecosystems or the permanent alteration of the natural cycles.
    The introduction of organisms and organic and inorganic material that can alter in a definitive way the national genetic patrimony is prohibited.
    Art. 5. The persons, people, communities and nationalities will have the right to benefit from the environment and form natural wealth that will allow wellbeing.
    The environmental services cannot be appropriated; its production, provision, use and exploitation, will be regulated by the State.
    “Public organisms” in Article 1 means the courts and government agencies, i.e., the people of Ecuador, would be able to take action to enforce nature rights if the government did not do so.
    Keep in touch.

  8. Dear R. Gates,
    Now that I am thinking about it, let me share with you and the Climate Ark community one more proposal.
    Whereas there is lacking only the political and economic will to feed and educate billions of people who form an enlarging base at the bottom of the world economy; and
    Whereas there are institutions of the United Nations willing, ready and able to perform the tasks associated with feeding and educating these people; and
    Whereas humanitarian action calls out for a resolute, global confrontation of hunger, illiteracy and poverty; and
    Whereas humanity naturally protects itself from danger and necessarily safeguards other creatures from extinction; and
    Whereas we of humankind live on a small, finite, fragile planet without causing its irreversible degradation,
    Now, Therefore, We Propose the following Summary of a Program of Action.
    ____________________________Target Population:
    There are three billion people at the deepest and widest part of the global economic pyramid.
    Under the auspices of the United Nations, the UN Development Program (UNDP) has general administrative authority for the FOED OPERATION; the UN Fund for Population (UNFPA) will be responsible for health education and training; and the World Food Program (WFP) will be put in charge of food nutrition, acquisition and distribution.
    The construction of 100,000 FOED OPERATION facilities over 20 years, beginning with the most impoverished areas worldwide. These facilities will provide children and adults with food and education, thereby offering an immediate solution to nutritional needs and a long term solution to ignorance and poverty.
    There are three billion dollars (one dollar per person) for construction costs of FOED OPERATION facilities. Costs related to feeding and educating people would be borne over time by UN member states who will agree to provide 10% of the GNP, thought of as a "humanitarian tithe."
    Through education, make it possible for fertile human beings to make informed, independent decisions regarding reproduction and to provide a foundation for an improved standard of living, in light of evolving understandings of what is sustainable population growth and sustainable economic development.
    ____________________________*FOED (foo'id) is derived from the words food and education.
    Very best regards to all,
    Steven Earl Salmony
    AWAREness Campaign on The Human Population, established 2001

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