sustainability

Blog

Prince Ea

Making It To The 4th Second

A hard-hitting delivery of the predicament humanity faces
Wednesday, May 30, 2018, 4:38 PM

As older guys in our forties and fifties, Chris and I realize that we're probably not the most compelling messengers to the Millenials and the generations behind them. So we're constantly looking for others who can be.

In that vein, this short video below from Prince Ea recently caught our attention. It delivers a hard-hitting emotional call-to-action for sustainability and resilience using much of the same data we frequently cite here at Peak Prosperity. » Read more

Podcast

Sherrod Photography/Shutterstock

William Rees: What's Driving The Planet's Accelerating Species Collapse?

Spoiler alert: It's us
Wednesday, November 15, 2017, 4:23 PM

Today's podcast guest is bioecologist and ecological economist Dr. William Rees, professor emeritus of the University of British Columbia’s School of Community and Regional Planning. Rees is best known for his development of the "ecological footprint" concept as a way to measure the demand a particular population places on the environmental resources it needs to survive.

Since the beginning of modern agriculture (around 1800), human activity has increased demand on planetary resources at an exponential rate. More energy has been expended -- and more resources consumed -- in the past 40 years than in all of human existence beforehand. That is placing a greater and greater strain on ecosystems that are now dangerously depleted.

Click the play button below to listen to Chris' interview with Dr. William Rees (67m:45s). » Read more

Podcast

lifeasahuman.com

Tim Jackson: The High Price Of Growth

A finite planet cannot sustain infinite economic growth
Monday, October 16, 2017, 3:31 PM

Modern society is addicted to and engineered for perpetual economic growth.

Now, a fourth-grader can tell you that nothing can grow forever, especially if you have finite resources. But that simple realization is eluding today's central planners, despite multiplying evidence that growth is becoming harder and harder to come by.

This week's podcast guest is Professor Tim Jackson, sustainability advisor for the UK government, professor of sustainable development at the University of Surrey and Director of CUSP. Tim is also a full member of the Club of Rome.

He explains why the exponential growth rates of today's economies, and their associated rates of resource extraction/consumption, will not be able to continue for much longer -- and why a pursuit of "prosperity" (defined much more broadly than simple consumerism) is a much healthier goal for humanity.

 

 

Blog

studiovin/Shutterstock

Who’s Going To Eat The Losses?

The only question that matters regarding today's markets
Friday, September 8, 2017, 11:25 PM

Younger generations that are being asked (goaded?) to step into an increasingly flawed future begin to resist. Which is completely understandable. They have nothing to gain if the status quo continues.

At the same time, the older generations mostly just settle into a stubborn insistence that everything will be fine if everyone will just do more of precisely what got us into the mess in the first place. Younger people should step up to make sure Medicare/Social Security/pensions remain fully funded, and buy the financial assets and homes of downsizing seniors at top dollar. The boomers have everything to lose if the status quo changes.

What happens when a culture’s dominant narratives are not just unsatisfactory, but entirely unworkable?  » Read more

Podcast

Archeoguidaroma

Joseph Tainter: The Collapse Of Complex Societies

What history predicts about our future prospects
Sunday, June 25, 2017, 11:20 PM

By popular demand, we welcome Joseph Tainter, USU professor and author of The Collapse Of Complex Societies (free book download here).

Dr. Tainter sees many of the same unsustainable risks the PeakProsperity.com audience focuses on -- an overleveraged economy, declining net energy per capita, and depleting key resources. 

He argues that the sustainability or collapse of a society follows from the success or failure of its problem-solving institutions. His work shows that societies collapse when their investments in social complexity and their energy subsidies reach a point of diminishing marginal returns. That is what we are going to be talking about today, especially in regards to where our culture is today, the risks it faces, and whether or not we might already be past the tipping point towards collapse but just don’t know it yet. » Read more

Blog

Finca Las Nubes

An Opportunity To Live Resiliently

A sustainable community seeks a few good members
Thursday, December 25, 2014, 4:54 PM

After watching the Crash Course, who among us hasn't felt insecure with where we live?

The idea of a sustainable community has a powerful allure. Imagine a resource-rich property mapped out with a plan for sustainable self-sufficiency, populated with a community of like-minded folks that already "get" the importance of cultivating resilience....  Sounds pretty good, right?

But what exactly is a "sustainable community" anyways? How do you find one? What's it like to live there? How do you know if it's all going to work out in the long run?

 
Insider

Farmland LP

Off the Cuff: An Opportunity to Own Productive Farmland (Revisited)

Without having to run a farm yourself
Friday, November 1, 2013, 8:34 PM

In this week's Off the Cuff podcast, Chris and Craig discuss sustainable farmland -- specifically, a model for how investors can own it.

Two years ago, we announced this model on our site: » Read more

Podcast

Indigenous: Sourcing Our Clothing Sustainably

Consider Fair Trade standards when buying your next shirt
Wednesday, May 29, 2013, 3:16 PM

When you buy a piece of clothing, how much thought do you give to how it was made?

Few shoppers do. But they should. In many respects, where our clothes comes from is nearly as important as where our food comes from.

The recent tragedy in Bangladesh, where over 1,000 sweatshop workers died in a building collapse, provides a stark reminder of this. 

In this podcast, I talk with retail entrepreneurs Scott Leonard and Matt Reynolds, co-founders of Indigenous Designs, to get a better understanding of the notoriety the textile industry has earned (much of it well-deserved) and learn about new business models that promise to transform it for the better. » Read more

Podcast

Adam Werbach: The Future of Sustainable Business

Combining social mission with corporate ROI
Sunday, February 10, 2013, 10:07 AM

Adam Werbach has been at the vanguard of the sustainability movement since high school when he founded a national organization of over 30,000 student volunteers who mobilized around environmental projects. A few years later, at the age of 23, he was elected the national President of the Sierra Club - the youngest in its 100+ year history.

In 2004, Adam turned the environmentalism movement on its head by publicly decrying its outdated thinking and lack of progress, given the scope of its mission. He challenged its followers to link their goals to other broad social and economic ones in order to have more impact.

He led the way, controversially, by working with Wal-Mart in 2006 to help them integrate sustainable practices into their supply chain and operations - a model he subsequently brought to many of the world's largest multinational corporations in over 80 countries.

In this interview, Chris and Adam discuss the "sustainable business" movement and its future prospects, including such questions as What does sustainability really mean? What are the key success requirements? What models show the most promise today? » Read more