The bright side of the "Green Economy": the UNEP
Green Economy Indicators and Green Growth Conference
4 - 6 December 2012 in Geneva
Some brief comments on the discussions about green growth and a "green economy"
About half of the speakers talked "Green Growth" without blushing, as can be inferred from these two illustrations.
In friendly private discussions the participants acknowledge overshoot
and the end of the road. Depending on the age of the person, the Post Peak Oil Downslope starts later.
I'm 70 so I can admit that the PPOD will start between 2015 and 2020
(I "have" two children and four grandchildren).
People under 45 with children have to put the PPOD at a later date, e.g. 2050.
The organisers must reject growth criticism, at least in public.
But ultimately it does not matter. We and they are all caught in the
system, most of them/us need a job etc.
Significantly the closing words today were spoken by a person from the
World Bank, for me indicative of the trend I seem having witnessed
over the twelve years that I'm in Geneva now: UNEP is increasingly
controlled by members of the discipline of economics, hence using that
talk and models.
When I raise that point the answer is yes we have to because the
people who decide in business (and politics?) are the financial
people. Capitalism crowding out democracy. Yes, the world bank is an
inter-govt. org but look at the ideology!
So there go the environment and real environmental science: down the drain.
The person from the world bank had the temerity to caution against a
too one-sided focus on physical resource sustainability indicators,
suggesting a balance should be struck between the three pillars, the
social, economic and ecology. She's part of the Brundlandt et al.
crowd which haven't yet grasped that society (e.g. social and economy,
which are unseparable) are totally embedded in and dependent on the
So whilst we were talking green growth indicators, the Doha climate
change conference is in a blue mood and the Swiss government wants to
prepare the country on 6 centigrade temperature rise by 2099. Haha,
Thats' why I'm changing my web pages away from the ecology, towards
more pleasant things: music: Yalla, yalla, Libiamo www.ecoglobe.ch.
Many participants know that we're lost, full stop. But economists and
NGOs and government sustainable development people have jobs. Can I blame
them? And it must scare them so the knowledge is suppressed to the
Even with the earth "closed system", they can't get it right, as can be seen from the correct image on the right.
Society (die Gesellschaft) is located in the environment (die Natur = nature = the earth) and the economy (die Wirtschaft) is located within society.
At the end of the first day I stood up and said green growth is lunacy
on a finite planet earth. There were a few other critical voices. But
as usual a real debate is impossible in a frontal conference and brief
In the coffee breaks we are kind to each other and have a good laugh,
I enjoyed the conference and I learned something. The organisers did a
great job, getting people from all over the world together
(participants some 100, speakers some 35;
cf: "The conference website "Measuring the Future We Want"
The website contains background reading and all conference material.)
Cheers on the PPOD, soon to open in this theatre ... Helmut Lubbers
PS: In my scenario the die-off might start by 2020, at a world
population of 8 billion:
Also compare: |
Technology, Money, Optimism, and Hope
The quartet that is killing humankind