The Global Predicament: the way out

Ted Trainer

Abstract


Most "green" thought and action fails to grasp that this society involves levels of resource consumption and environmental impact that are far beyond those that can be sustained or spread to all people. Technical advance and reforms within consumer-capitalist society cannot solve the problems; this will be illustrated by reference to greenhouse and energy problems. Although present levels of consumption are grossly unsustainable, the supreme priority is economic growth, i.e. to raise them without limit. In addition a system based on free market principles cannot be just. Rich world affluence would not be possible if wealth was not being transferred from poor countries. The only way out of the alarming global situation is via transition to some kind of Simpler Way, which is unlikely to be taken. Implications for bringing about such a transition will be indicated.

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