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Recommended Reading

Life, Money & Illusion 2nd Ed

2nd Edition (2009)
ISBN 978-0-86571-659-9

Life, Money & Illusion

Original (2006)
ISBN 0-978973-0-0

Life, Money & Illusion

Living on Earth as if we want to stay

by Mike Nickerson

(2006) (2009)

ISBN 0-978973-0-0

ISBN 978-0-86571-659-9

In recent years, unchecked economic growth in the Western world has led to resource depletion and widespread environmental degradation. Life, Money & Illusion was inspired by the dilemma of having an economic structure that has to grow to remain healthy while facing the necessity of reducing our footprint and establishing a stable state economy to secure ecological viability on a finite planet.

The book launches a review of economic expansion. It examines how growth came to be a goal and how that goal, though once hugely beneficial, is now the propellant for catastrophe. Then, by showing how the economy can be restructured to remain within planetary limits, it points the way to a sustainable future.
Life, Money & Illusion advocates change by shifting the dominant economic paradigm from growth to sustainability. Techniques include:

* Measuring well-being through genuine progress
* Encouraging sustainable investment
* Practical changes such as tax shifting, carbon taxes and monetary reform
* Honoring the Golden Rule instead of the Rule of Gold.

An engaging and empowering vision of the future that celebrates humanity’s extraordinary ability to adapt and evolve, Life, Money & Illusion will appeal to social activists, environmentalists and all those who are committed to a sustainable future.

Green Economics

The Gaia Atlas of

Green Economics

by Paul Ekins

ISBN 0-385-41914-7


Every day, all over the world, billions of people play their part in humanity's global growth economy. Money is the god, material wealth the principal virtue, and market economics the ruler of our times. But this economics of consumption is full of hidden costs. It is drawing us ever deeper into social, ecological, and economic crisis. We are trading the health of the Earth and our communities for freeways and the free market. This pioneering work in "green" economics shows us a way out of this destructive obsession with economic growth. It explores a new concept of wealth and wealth creation; it describes a new economics synthesis between the market, state, families, and communities; it sets out what governments and people can do to build a sustainable society - to create prosperity and a fairer world in a healthy environment.

Paul Ekins is one of the foremost thinkers in a new field, working to bring economics into line with the realities of our time and show people how economics affects all our lives. Mayer Hillman and Robert Hutchison contribute their specialist knowledge of social policy issues.

"Invaluable. Economics is the key to it all and green economics have never been so lucidly and compellingly presented as in this book. Paul Ekins is quite simply the best in the field". - Jonathan Porritt, The former Chairperson of the UK Green Party and the former Director of Friends of the Earth.


Notes, Stories and Exercises for Developing Unimaginable Wealth

by Mark A. Burch

ISBN 0-86571-323--5


Simplicity does not preach escape from the world but encourages us to discover a more loving and direct engagement with life. Mark Burch writes from personal experiences about opening the space in our hearts and minds to more consciously discover the richness of life that lies beneath the clutter and complexity of our modern world.

- Duane Elgin, author of Voluntary Simplicity and Awakening Earth

Limits to Growth

Limits to Growth

The 30-Year Update

by Donella H. Meadows, Jorgen Randers, Dennis L. Meadows

ISBN 193149858X


In 1972, three scientists from MIT created a computer model that analyzed global resource consumption and production. Their results shocked the world and created stirring conversation about global ''overshoot,'' or resource use beyond the carrying capacity of the planet. Now, preeminent environmental scientists Donnella Meadows, Jorgen Randers, and Dennis Meadows have teamed up again to update and expand their original findings in The Limits to Growth: The 30 Year Global Update. Meadows, Randers, and Meadows are international environmental leaders recognized for their groundbreaking research into early signs of wear on the planet. Citing climate change as the most tangible example of our current overshoot, the scientists now provide us with an updated scenario and a plan to reduce our needs to meet the carrying capacity of the planet. Over the past three decades, population growth and global warming have forged on with a striking semblance to the scenarios laid out by the World3 computer model in the original Limits to Growth. While Meadows, Randers, and Meadows do not make a practice of predicting future environmental degradation, they offer an analysis of present and future trends in resource use, and assess a variety of possible outcomes. In many ways, the message contained in Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update is a warning. Overshoot cannot be sustained without collapse. But, as the authors are careful to point out, there is reason to believe that humanity can still reverse some of its damage to Earth if it takes appropriate measures to reduce inefficiency and waste. Written in refreshingly accessible prose, Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update is a long anticipated revival of some of the original voices in the growing chorus of sustainability. Limits to Growth: The 30 Year Update is a work of stunning intelligence that will expose for humanity the hazy but critical line between human growth and human development.

The Collapse of Globalism

The Collapse Of Globalism

And The Reinvention Of The World

by John Ralston Saul

ISBN 0143050133


Proponents of globalism predicted that nation states were heading toward irrelevance, that economics not politics or arms, would determine the course of human events, that growth in international trade would foster prosperous markets that would in turn abolish poverty and change dictatorships into democracies.

The successes of globalization include the astonishing growth in world trade and the unexpected rise of India and China, which seem slated to become twenty-first-century superpowers. But its collapse has left us with a chaotic vacuum. The United States appears determined to ignore its international critics. In Europe, problems such as racism, terrorism and renewed internal nationalism call for uniquely European solutions born out of local experiences and needs. Elsewhere, the world looks for answers to African debt the AIDS epidemic, the return of fundamentalism and terrorism, all of which perversely refuse to disappear despite the theoretical rise in global prosperity.

Insightful and prophetic, The Collapse of Globalism is destined to take its place as one of the seminal books of our time.

The Party's Over

The Party's Over

Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies

by Richard Heinberg

ISBN 0-86571-482-7


The world is about to run out of cheap oil and change dramatically. Within the next few years, global production will peak. Thereafter, even if industrial societies begin to switch to alternative energy sources, they will have less net energy each year to do all the work essential to the survival of complex societies. We are entering a new era, as different from the industrial era as the latter was from medieval times.

In The Party's Over, Richard Heinberg places this momentous transition in historical context, showing how industrialism arose from the harnessing of fossil fuels, how competition to control access to oil shaped the geopolitics of the 20th century, and how contention for dwindling energy resources in the 21st century will lead to resource wars in the Middle East, Central Asia, and South America. He describes the likely impacts of oil depletion, and all of the energy alternatives. Predicting chaos unless the U.S. -- the world's foremost oil consumer -- is willing to join with other countries to implement a global program of resource conservation and sharing, he also recommends a "managed collapse" that might make way for a slower-paced, low-energy, sustainable society in the future.

More readable than other accounts of this issue, with fuller discussion of the context, social implications, and recommendations for personal, community, national, and global action, Heinberg''s updated book is a riveting wake-up call for humankind as the oil era winds down, and a critical tool for understanding and influencing current U.S. foreign policy.

"Richard Heinberg has distilled complex facts, histories, and events into a readable overview of the energy systems that keep today's mass society running. The result is jarring. The Party's Over is the book we need to reorient ourselves for a realistic future." Chellis Glendinning, PhD, author of Off the Map: An Expedition Deep into Empire and the Global Economy.

"A few generations hence, our descendants will look back on the industrial world of today with a combination of awe, wonderment, and horror. Their past is our future - a transitional era of dwindling energy supplies, resource wars, and industrial collapse. If societies a century from now have managed to learn how to live peacefully, modestly, and sustainably, it may be at least partly because the advice in this timely book was heeded." Thom Hartmann, author of The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight and Unequal Protection: The rise of corporate dominance and theft of human rights.

"As Richard Heinberg makes shockingly clear in this extraordinarily well-researched and -written book, our way of life will soon change dramatically, as oil production and reserves both begin to decline. He also makes clear that our actions now will strongly affect what is left of the world when this shift away from oil takes place. But before we can act we must understand, and before we can understand we must be informed. In this compelling book, Richard Heinberg gives us the tools - the information and understanding - to act. This is a wise and important book." Derrick Jensen, author of A Language Older than Words and The Culture of Make Believe.

"Richard Heinberg has written an outstanding book, The Party's Over. I hope that the U.S. President and Congress read his book.The world and the U.S. populations are projected to double in 50 and 70 years, respectively, and global oil supplies are projected to be mostly depleted in 50 years! I agree with Heinberg that society is headed for serious trouble in the near future." David Pimentel, PhD, Professor, Department of Entomology, Systematics and Ecology, Cornell University.

State of the World 2008

State of the World 2008:

Innovations for a Sustainable Economy

The Worldwatch Institute

ISBN 978-0-393-33031-1


For 25 years, Worldwatch Institute’s State of the World reports have helped guide concerned citizens, policymakers, business innovators, and others toward sustainable solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. This year, State of the World 2008: Innovations for a Sustainable Economy outlines the innovations that are helping to create a global economy that serves both people and the planet.

These innovations include microfinance, closed-loop manufacturing, large-scale renewable energy, carbon markets, biodiversity banking, sustainable communities, and the use of trusts to protect common resources, among many others. Innovators—from top-ranked businesses to everyday citizens—are rethinking conventional notions of economic progress, identifying obstacles that block sustainable economic activity and rallying coalitions to produce strategies for achieving specific sustainability goals.

State of the World 2010:

Transforming Cultures - From Consumerism to Sustainability

The Worldwatch Institute

ISBN 978-0-393-333726-6


Like a tsunami, consumerism has engulfed human cultures and Earth’s ecosystems. Left unaddressed, we risk global disaster. But if we channel this wave, intentionally transforming our cultures to center on sustainability, we will not only prevent catastrophe, but may usher in an era of sustainability—one that allows all people to thrive while protecting, even restoring, Earth.

In State of the World 2010, sixty renowned researchers and practitioners describe how we can harness the world’s leading institutions—education, the media, business, governments, traditions, and social movements—to reorient cultures toward sustainability.

“This is the definitive guide to culture and sustainability…If you’re involved in transforming our world for the better, it is essential reading!”
--Tim Jackson, author of Prosperity Without Growth

"State of the World 2010: Transforming Cultures is breaking new ground. We are paying a high price for ignoring the issues of consumption and consumerism for so long. What a wonderful book this is to guide us into the years ahead."
-- Gus Speth, author of The Bridge at the Edge of the World: Capitalism, the Environment, and Crossing from Crisis to Sustainability

"Worldwatch has taken on an ambitious agenda in this volume. No generation in history has achieved a cultural transformation as sweeping as the one called for here…it is hard not to be impressed with the book’s boldness "
—Muhammad Yunus, founder of the Grameen Bank

"If we continue to think of ourselves mostly as consumers, it’s going to be very hard to bring our environmental troubles under control. But it’s also going to be very hard to live the rounded and joyful lives that could be ours. This is a subversive volume in all the best ways!"
—Bill McKibben, author of Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet

"This year’s State of the World report is a cultural mindbomb exploding with devastating force. I hope it wakes a few people up ."
—Kalle Lasn, Editor of Adbusters magazine

Plan B 3.0

PLAN B 3.0

Mobilizing to Save Civilization

by Lester R. Brown

ISBN 978-0-393-33087-8


In this updated edition of the landmark Plan B, Lester Brown outlines a survival strategy for our early twenty-first-century civilization. The world faces many environmental trends of disruption and decline, including rising temperatures and spreading water shortage. In addition to these looming threats, we face the peaking of oil, annual population growth of 70 million, a widening global economic divide, and a growing list of failing states. The scale and complexity of issues facing our fast-forward world have no precedent

With Plan A, business as usual, we have neglected these issues overly long. In Plan B 3.0, Lester R. Brown warns that the only effective response now is a World War II-type mobilization like that in the United States after the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Download book as pdf - 3MB

The Upside of Down

The Upside of Down

Catastrophe, Creativity and the Renewal of Civilization

by Thomas Homer-Dixon

ISBN 978-0-676-97722-6


With easy-to-understand terminology and a mountain of research, Toronto author Homer-Dixon (The Ingenuity Gap) faces down imminent, unavoidable and catastrophic threats to modern civilization, keeping a wary eye on mankind's chances to adapt. Methodically illustrating how the modern world is doomed to suffer a large-scale breakdown, Homer-Dixon enumerates the "tectonic stresses" on civilization-population growth disparities, energy scarcity, environmental damage, and economic instabilities-and the "multipliers"-increasing global connectivity and small groups' ability to enact destruction-that help propel them. Woven throughout are well-illustrated comparisons between the current state of industrialized nations-especially the U.S.-with the unsustainable complexities, and subsequent downfall, of the Roman Empire. With each page, humanity's situation seems more dire, but Homer-Dixon argues that the force of "catagenesis"-the "commonplace occurrence of renewal through breakdown"-means that good will come from the collapse of civilization as we know it. Unfortunately, he offers few practical suggestions as to how we can prepare for civilization's inevitable failure, and little evidence on which to hang hope. As a result, the book takes on a tone of doomsday prophecy directly at odds with its title. Where Homer-Dixon succeeds admirably is in explaining exactly why modern stresses are so worrisome and the outcomes that neglect could cause.

Deep Economy

Deep Economy

The Wealth of Communities and the Durable Future

by Bill McKibben

ISBN 978-0-8050-8722-2


The bestselling author of The End of Nature issues an impassioned call to arms for an economy that creates community and ennobles our lives.

In this powerful and provocative manifesto, Bill McKibben offers the biggest challenge in a generation to the prevailing view of our economy. For the first time in human history, he observes, "more" is no longer synonymous with "better"—indeed, for many of us, they have become almost opposites. McKibben puts forward a new way to think about the things we buy, the food we eat, the energy we use, and the money that pays for it all. Our purchases, he says, need not be at odds with the things we truly value.

McKibben's animating idea is that we need to move beyond "growth" as the paramount economic ideal and pursue prosperity in a more local direction, with cities, suburbs, and regions producing more of their own food, generating more of their own energy, and even creating more of their own culture and entertainment. He shows this concept blossoming around the world with striking results, from the burgeoning economies of India and China to the more mature societies of Europe and New England. For those who worry about environmental threats, he offers a route out of the worst of those problems. For those who wonder if there isn't something more to life than buying, he provides the insight to think about one's life as an individual and as a member of a larger community.

McKibben offers a realistic, if challenging, scenario for a hopeful future. As he so eloquently shows, the more we nurture the essential humanity of our economy, the more we will recapture our own.

Blessed Unrest

Blessed Unrest

How the Largest Social Movement in History is Restoring

Grace, Justice, and Beauty to the World

by Paul Hawken

ISBN 978-0-14-311365-2


Across the planet, groups ranging from neighborhood associations to well-funded international organizations are confronting issues like the destruction of the environment, the abuses of free-market fundamentalism, social justice, and the loss of indigenous cultures. Though these groups share no unifying ideology or charismatic leader and are mostly unrecognized by politicians and the media, they are bringing about a profound transformation of human society.

In this stirring book, world-renowned environmentalist Paul Hawken tells the story of what is going right in this world. Blessed Unrest is the account of how people - from students in Australia to farmers in France, from shoemakers to zoologists and poets - use imagination, conviction, and resilience to redefine our relationship to the environment and to one another, healing the wounds of the earth with passion and determination. Blessed Unrest also features a guide to the project areas being pursued by the environmental and social justice movements - an invaluable resource and inspiration.

The Bridge at the Edge of the World

The Bridge at the Edge of the World

Capitalism, the Environment, and Crossing from

Crisis to Sustainability

by James Gustave Speth

ISBN 978-0-300-13611-1


“In The Bridge at the Edge of the World, James Gustave Speth gives us new lenses with which to see what we have done to our environment and, more important, to see what we can do to restore it. He challenges us all to act not for ourselves, but for our children and grandchildren. In particular, he takes on the most powerful guardians of the status quo - our mindsets. The bridge he hopes to construct has its bridgehead firmly based in today, because Speth asks us to think about it and then to use our creativity, imagination, and the power of common purpose to act to restore the environment and create a healthier world.”
Honourable Gordon Campbell, Premier, Province of British Columbia

"Inherent in the dynamics of capitalism is a powerful drive to earn profits, invest them, innovate, and thus grow the economy, typically at exponential rates, with the result that the capitalist era has in fact been characterized by a remarkable exponential expansion of the world economy. The capitalist operating system, whatever its shortcomings, is very good at generating growth.

These features of capitalism, as they are constituted today, work together to produce an economic and political reality that is highly destructive of the environment. An unquestioning society-wide commitment to economic growth at almost any cost; enormous investment in technologies designed with little regard for the environment; powerful corporate interests whose overriding objective is to grow by generating profit, including profit from avoiding the environmental costs they create; markets that systematically fail to recognize environmental costs unless corrected by government; government that is subservient to corporate interests and the growth imperative; rampant consumerism spurred by a worshipping of novelty and by sophisticated advertising; economic activity so large in scale that its impacts alter the fundamental biophysical operations of the planet—all combine to deliver an ever-growing world economy that is undermining the planet’s ability to sustain life." - Introduction 7.

The Transition Handbook

The Transition Handbook

From oil dependency to local resilience

by Rob Hopkins

ISBN 978-1-900322-18-8


“Rob Hopkins has written the most thorough description so far of how we get from the present chaos of cities and towns that are killing the planet and the people in them, to viable new ecologically sustainable urban and rural systems. This is more than a theoretical how-to manual; it is based on his own team’s ground-breaking work, engaging whole communities in a transformative process that accepts the crucial need to reverse course, and has succeeded in doing so. The book is a great guide for how we must live in a future world where the limits of nature are honoured, but so are the basic comforts and joys of communities coming together in a great common cause. There is no more important book than this one for any community seeking change toward ecological sustainability.”
- Jerry Mander, founder/director of the International Forum on Globalization and author of In the Absence of the Sacred

“Rob Hopkins is the Gentle Giant of the green movement, and his timely and hugely important book reveals a fresh and empowering approach that will help us transition into a materially leaner but inwardly richer human experience. Full of reliable, readable, far-reaching scholarship, and warmhearted practical advice on how to instigate transition culture wherever you are, this book will energise and regenerate your commitment to place, community and simple living. There is no better call to action than this book, and no better guide to the hands-on creation of a liveable future.”
- Dr Stephan Harding, co-ordinator of the MSc in Holistic Science at Schumacher College and author of Animate Earth: Science, Intuition and Gaia

Prosperity without growth?

The transition to a sustainable economy

by Tim Jackson

Sustainable Development Commission (UK)

(March 2009)

The most compelling endorsement of Steady-State Economics.

Prosperity without growth? is the culmination of a two year programme of work examining what prosperity might entail in a sustainable context. Contributors to the project include eminent economists and academics including Herman Daly, Paul Ekins, Kate Soper, Ziauddin Sardar and Tim Kasser.

"Fundamentally transforming the foundations of the economy is the biggest contribution we can make towards building a sustainable future. The current economic crisis may be painful, but it will be nothing compared with the crises we will face if we continue to grow in a way that threatens the life-support systems on which we rely."
- Jonathon Porritt, Chair of the Sustainable Development Commission.

Download summary - 155KB

Download full report as pdf - 3MB

Agenda for a New Economy

From Phantom Wealth to Real Wealth

by David C. Korten

ISBN 978-1-60509-289-8


“At last, a book by one of our most brilliant economic thinkers that outlines the real causes of—and solutions to—the current economic crisis! David Korten has devoted his professional life to analyzing the strengths and weaknesses of the global economic system. Now he draws on his extensive knowledge to inspire us, we the people, to take actions that will create a more just and sustainable world for ourselves and future generations.
—John Perkins, New York Times bestselling author of Confessions of an Economic Hit Man and The Secret History of the American Empire

"Korten turns conventional economic thinking upside down and inside out. This book reveals what is really going on in the U.S. and global economies - and what can and should be done about it."
—Van Jones, The Green Collar Economy

“David Korten tells the truth like no one else — a truth our planet needs us to hear.”
—Marjorie Kelly, cofounder, Corporation 20/20; founding editor, Business Ethics magazine; and author of The Divine Right of Capital

"Once again David Korten has provided us with a clear understanding of why the old economy is driving us and nature to ruin - and a framework for transforming it. Especially in this time of economic meltdown it's crucial for caring people everywhere to get that patching the tires of a vehicle that's going over a cliff is neither sane nor acceptable. The financial crisis is a healing crisis and Korten gives us prescriptions that could actually give us a thriving and just economy that works for people and the planet. I hope every reader feels, as I have, a sense of relief at hearing the truth and a renewed passion for civic engagement, now knowing what direction we need to steer our ship."
—Vicki Robin, co-author, Your Money or Your Life, cofounder, Conversation Cafes

Watch 7 min video on PBS - David Korten - Let Wall Street Fail

The Great Transition

The Great Transition

A tale of how it turned out right

new economics foundation

(128 pages)

ISBN 978 1 904883 63 3


The UK like many nations is in the midst of a triple crunch – a coming together of credit-fuelled financial crisis, accelerating climate change and highly volatile energy prices underpinned by the approaching peak in global oil production. These are no longer abstract, distant issues of financial and environmental policy. They are beginning to affect everyone. The Great Transition shows why we need to get behind solutions that can proactively deal with climate change, the economic crisis and are also socially progressive. These are choices we must take, because ahead, both progressive and poisonous political trains of thought may emerge. The Great Transition sets out why the transition to a new economy is not only necessary, it is both possible and desirable.

Download pdf - 847KB

21 Hours

21 Hours

Why a shorter working week can help us all flourish in the 21st century

new economics foundation

(40 pages)

ISBN 978 1 904882 70 1


This report sets out arguments for a much shorter working week. It proposes a radical change in what is considered ‘normal’ – down from 40 hours or more, to 21 hours. While people can choose to work longer or shorter hours, we propose that 21 hours – or its equivalent spread across the calendar year – should become the standard that is generally expected by government, employers, trade unions, employees, and everyone else.

Download pdf - 449KB

Creating New Money

Creating New Money

A monetary reform for the information age

new economics foundation

(107 pages)

ISBN 899407 29 4


The existing money system is out of date.

In modern democratic societies, the value created by issuing new money should be a common, not a private, resource. New money should be put into circulation as public spending, not as profit-making loans by commercial banks. In Britain, the result would be equivalent to 12p off income tax. Other countries would benefit comparably.

In the information age, money has mainly become information, electronically stored and transmitted. Monetary policies that serve the public interest can no longer be founded on a smoke-and-mirrors fiction that “real money” lurks behind the information.

The authors propose a simple reform, and spell out its practicalities step-by-step. The economic, social and environmental arguments for it are very strong. The public purse, private households and businesses will all benefit from it.

Download pdf - 378KB


The Global Economic Crisis

The Great Depression of the XXI Century

Michel Chossudovsky and Andrew Gavin Marshall (Editors)

Montreal, Global Research Publishers. Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

ISBN 978-0-9737147-3-9 (416 pages)


In all major regions of the world, the economic recession is deep-seated, resulting in mass unemployment, the collapse of state social programs and the impoverishment of millions of people. The meltdown of financial markets was the result of institutionalized fraud and financial manipulation. The economic crisis is accompanied by a worldwide process of militarization, a “war without borders” led by the U.S. and its NATO allies.

This book takes the reader through the corridors of the Federal Reserve, into the plush corporate boardrooms on Wall Street where far-reaching financial transactions are routinely undertaken.

Each of the authors in this timely collection digs beneath the gilded surface to reveal a complex web of deceit and media distortion which serves to conceal the workings of the global economic system and its devastating impacts on people`s lives.

Michel Chossudovsky is an award-winning author, Professor of Economics (Emeritus) at the University of Ottawa and Director of the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG), Montreal. He is the author of The Globalization of Poverty and The New World Order (2003) and America’s “War on Terrorism” (2005). He is also a contributor to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. His writings have been published in more than twenty languages.

Andrew Gavin Marshall is an independent writer both on the contemporary structures of capitalism as well as on the history of the global political economy. He is a Research Associate with the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG).

“This important collection offers the reader a most comprehensive analysis of the various facets – especially the financial, social and military ramifications – from an outstanding list of world-class social thinkers.” -Mario Seccareccia, Professor of Economics, University of Ottawa

“In-depth investigations of the inner workings of the plutocracy in crisis, presented by some of our best politico-economic analysts. This book should help put to rest the hallucinations of ‘free market’ ideology.” -Michael Parenti, author of God and His Demons and Contrary Notions

“Provides a very readable exposé of a global economic system, manipulated by a handful of extremely powerful economic actors for their own benefit, to enrich a few at the expense of an ever-growing majority.” -David Ray Griffin, author of The New Pearl Harbor Revisited

The complex causes as well as the devastating consequences of the economic crisis are carefully scrutinized with contributions from Ellen Brown, Tom Burghardt, Michel Chossudovsky, Richard C. Cook, Shamus Cooke, John Bellamy Foster, Michael Hudson, Tanya Cariina Hsu, Fred Magdoff, Andrew Gavin Marshall, James Petras, Peter Phillips, Peter Dale Scott, Bill Van Auken, Claudia von Werlhof and Mike Whitney.

Economic Growth, the Environment and International Relations

The Growth Paradigm

Stephen J. Purdey

ISBN 978-0415503501 (192 pages)


The ubiquity of the commitment to economic growth, which Purdey refers to as the growth paradigm, is extraordinary. National governments around the world are seized of the same objective. Major international institutions such as the UN, the WTO, the World Bank, IMF and OECD, powerful international organizations such as regional trading blocs and multinational corporations – even civil societies of all kinds enthusiastically pursue a larger economic pie.

This book examines the deep origins and rise to prominence of the commitment to economic growth. It explains why, despite the diversity of regime types, levels of development, cultures and other divisions typical of international relations, all major actors in the modern global polity pursue an identical political priority. Purdey critically examines the growth paradigm highlighting its normative foundations and its environmental impact, especially climate change. Using a neo-Gramscian approach, Purdey re-engages the ‘limits to growth’ controversy, identifying the commitment to growth as a form of utopianism that is as dangerous as it is seductive.

By illuminating and interrogating the history, politics and morality of the growth paradigm, this book shifts the terrain of the limits debate from instrumental to ethical considerations. It will be of interest to students and scholars of political economy, international relations, environmental studies and ethics.

The End of Growth

Adapting to Our New Economic Reality

Richard Heinberg

ISBN 978-0-86571-695-7 (321 pages)


Economists insist that recovery is at hand, yet unemployment remains high, real estate values continue to sink, and governments stagger under record deficits. The End of Growth proposes a startling diagnosis: humanity has reached a fundamental turning point in its economic history. The expansionary trajectory of industrial civilization is colliding with non-negotiable natural limits.

Richard Heinberg's latest landmark work goes to the heart of the ongoing financial crisis, explaining how and why it occurred, and what we must do to avert the worst potential outcomes. Written in an engaging, highly readable style, it shows why growth is being blocked by three factors:

These converging limits will force us to re-evaluate cherished economic theories and to reinvent money and commerce.

The End of Growth describes what policy makers, communities, and families can do to build a new economy that operates within Earth's budget of energy and resources. We can thrive during the transition if we set goals that promote human and environmental well-being, rather than continuing to pursue the now-unattainable prize of ever-expanding GDP.

Enough is Enough

Building a Sustainable Economy in a World of Finite Resources

Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill

ISBN 9781609948054


It’s time for a new kind of economy.

We’re overusing the earth’s finite resources, and yet excessive consumption is failing to improve our lives. In Enough Is Enough, Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill lay out a visionary but realistic alternative to the perpetual pursuit of economic growth—an economy where the goal is enough, not more.

They explore specific strategies to conserve natural resources, stabilize population, reduce inequality, fix the financial system, create jobs, and more—all with the aim of maximizing long-term well-being instead of short-term profits. Filled with fresh ideas and surprising optimism, Enough Is Enough is the primer for achieving genuine prosperity and a hopeful future for all.

Enough Is Enough is an extremely important and timely work. Herman Daly and his many colleagues have masterfully articulated the importance of creating a new economy that can enhance rather than destroy our natural resources and, at the same time, improve our quality of life. Now, in Enough Is Enough, Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill have laid out a pragmatic scenario that describes, in great detail, how we can all become involved in making that economy a reality in the communities and on the planet in which we live. This is a must-read for all those interested in their own welfare and that of their children and grandchildren.”
—Frederick Kirschenmann, Professor of Philosophy, Iowa State University, and author of Cultivating an Ecological Conscience

“Humans seem to be intent on confirming the argument of biologist Ernst Mayr that higher intelligence may be a lethal mutation. But the grim prognosis is not inevitable. This lucid, informed, and highly constructive book shows that with the will to act, solutions can be found to build a steady-state economy geared to meeting human needs.”
—Noam Chomsky

Enough Is Enough is the most accessible and well-argued case for a sustainable economy I’ve ever read. With stories, examples, and plenty of data, but without the tedium of academic writing, Dietz and O’Neill dismantle the most persistent of all economic myths—that economies must grow without limit to provide full employment and improve the conditions of the poor. They explain how a different economic model can meet our needs without irreversible damage to the life-support systems of our planet. I can’t recommend a book more highly.”
—John de Graaf, coauthor of Affluenza and What’s the Economy for, Anyway?

This Changes Everything

This Changes Everything

Capitalism vs The Climate

Naomi Klein

ISBN 9780307401991


Forget everything you think you know about global warming. The really inconvenient truth is that it's not about carbon-it's about capitalism. The convenient truth is that we can seize this existential crisis to transform our failed system and build something radically better. In her most provocative book yet, Naomi Klein, author of the global bestsellers The Shock Doctrine and No Logo, tackles the most profound threat humanity has ever faced: the war our economic model is waging against life on earth.

Klein exposes the myths that are clouding the climate debate. We have been told the market will save us, when in fact the addiction to profit and growth is digging us in deeper every day. We have been told it's impossible to get off fossil fuels when in fact we know exactly how to do it-it just requires breaking every rule in the "free-market" playbook: reining in corporate power, rebuilding local economies and reclaiming our democracies. We have also been told that humanity is too greedy and selfish to rise to this challenge. In fact, all around the world, the fight back is already succeeding in ways both surprising and inspiring.

Climate Change, Klein argues, is a civilizational wake-up call, a powerful message delivered in the language of fires, floods, storms and droughts. Confronting it is no longer about changing the light bulbs. It's about changing the world-before the world changes so drastically that no one is safe. Either we leap-or we sink.

Once a decade, Naomi Klein writes a book that redefines its era. No Logo did so for globalization. The Shock Doctrine changed the way we think about austerity. This Changes Everything is about to upend the debate about the stormy era already upon us.

This Changes Everything

Killing the Host

How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy

Michael Hudson

ISBN 978-1568587370


How financial parasites and debt destroy the global economy. Professor Hudson continues the discussion on the financialization of capital and its global effects. KILLING THE HOST exposes how finance, insurance, and real estate (the FIRE sector) have gained control of the global economy at the expense of industrial capitalism and governments. The FIRE sector is responsible for today’s economic polarization (the 1% vs. the 99%) via favored tax status that inflates real estate prices while deflating the “real” economy of labor and production. The Great 2008 Bailout saved the banks but not the economy, and plunged the U.S., Irish, Latvian and Greek economies into debt deflation and austerity. This book describes how the phenomenon of debt deflation imposes austerity on the U.S. and European economies, siphoning wealth and income upward to the financial sector while impoverishing the middle class.

You Can Save The Earth

You Can Save The Earth

7 Reasons Why & 7 Simple Ways

Editor: Sean Hatherleigh

ISBN 978-1-5782-6280-9


Finally an inspirational, hopeful book which empowers us to make the choices we need to make...not out of fear but out of love for ourselves, our Earth, and each other.

“The Earth is what we all have in common. It is what we are made of and what we live from, and we cannot damage it without damaging those with whom we share it.” –Wendell Berry

You Can Save the Earth: 7 Reasons Why & 7 Simple Ways is the perfect book to pick up for your friends, your office, your home, and yourself. While many books on sustainability and climate change focus only on disasters and what has gone wrong–what we have lost–this one takes a new tack. You Can Save the Earth focuses on real-life, simple solutions to many of our global problems, and emphasizes steps that can be taken on an individual basis or on a local level to promote environmental awareness and conservation.

Because it promotes reflection rather than guilt, You Can Save the Earth offers a new approach to discussing the environment, climate change, and how man influences his surroundings. After examining the impact that man has on his environment, You Can Save the Earth provides seven simple things you can do or a “roadmap” for readers to follow in their daily lives, from the office, to the home, the store, and everywhere in between. By creating good habits and incorporating them into our lifestyles, man can live in closer harmony with his environment.

You Can Save the Earth Offers Seven Important Reasons Why Environmental Awareness and Conservation are so Important:

All Life is Interconnected: It is impossible for people to separate themselves from each other, the Earth, or the many living things on the Earth. When we lack respect for the environment and the Earth, we are inevitably damaging ourselves as well.

The Health of the Earth Defines Our Well-being: The damage we do to the Earth is often returned upon man, with the advent of global warming there has been an increase in disease and chronic environmentally caused conditions such as Asthma.

Water is the Essence of All Life: Our disastrous policies and ongoing pollution have the potential to do devastating damage to our water supply.

The Air We Breathe: Air is essential to human life, yet man has shown a remarkable disrespect for air since the industrial revolution. We spew pollution, including carbon dioxide, sulfur, and other harmful chemicals, into the atmosphere at startling rates. It is vital to the ongoing health of mankind that we begin to show more respect for the atmosphere and what we put into it.

The Limits of Fossil Fuels: Oil has been an abundant resource for hundreds of years, but supplies are becoming scarcer. Indeed the scarcity of oil has led to an increase in oil prices, making it important and economical for consumers to focus on efficiency of usage. Efficiency in the home, car, and in life can not only save money, it can help the environment.

The Food That Nourishes: Many of the foods we eat on a year round basis are in fact seasonal in different areas of the world. This means that to get these foods during seasons they do not grow, they are shipped from elsewhere in the world. While this allows us to have tomatoes in the winter, it is important to note that these tomatoes are not as fresh or flavorful as those grown locally. In addition, the constant transport of food over vast distances contributes heavily to global pollution, as the amount of energy consumed and waste created to transport fresh food is extremely large.

The Fragile Balance: The Earth is hospitable to mankind because of the balance maintained in the environment. With our constant pollution and energy use, we are threatening that balance, and so harming ourselves and our future. If this balance is disturbed in any major way, the planet could become uninhabitable to future generations.

You Can Save the Earth Offers Seven Simple Ways that YOU can Contribute to a Positive Future:

Love the Earth: A deeper understanding of your relationship with the Earth, and the joy and health it brings you, is important to changing your behavior to accommodate the Earth’s needs.

Make Wiser Choices: In this day and age, there are a plethora of products that offer energy-saving, environmentally friendly options for the home and business.

Choose to Reduce: Reducing energy usage and consumption are great ways to help the environment and save money.

Embrace Green Technology: Compact Fluorescent Lights offer a more energy efficient alternative to incandescent lights. Adding insulation to your home can help you reduce your energy consumption and save you money.

Recycle, Reuse, and Repair: The rampant consumerism and short-lived product life spans we see today are relatively recent developments. During more challenging economic times people often made do with what they had. This meant repairing things in unique and inventive ways. Next time you are considering throwing something away in favor of buying a new copy, think of ways you could continue to use or it or repair it.

Think Local: Ride your bicycle to work, take public transportation, eat locally grown foods purchased at farmer’s markets; these are all ways that you can contribute to your local community, save energy, and live a healthier life.

Cherish the Earth’s Precious Gifts: We have been blessed with a beautiful home, a beautiful environment, and an often picturesque habitat in which we can grow and thrive. It is important to appreciate the beauty and opportunity that the Earth offers us, and in turn work to respect the Earth and conserve its natural wonder and beauty.


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