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The Great Transition
Policy news & blueprints for the transition to a new Sustainable and Social Economy
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Andrew Simms - The New Materialism: better, not more

Andrew Simms - The New Materialism: better, not more | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"The new materialism is about an economy of better, not more. It is rich in the good quality work created by providing useful services, making things that last and can be repaired many times before being recycled, allowing us to share better the surplus of stuff we already have."

Great positive article by NEF's Andrew Simms.

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Individual Actions Just Don't Add Up to Environmental Change

Individual Actions Just Don't Add Up to Environmental Change | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"The bottom line is that green shopping, even when practiced by millions of people, just doesn’t add up to enough to affect the system. Sociologists call this the behavior-impact gap.."

 

Excellent contribution by Annie Leonard ("The Sory of Stuff") to an interesting NY Times debate on sustainability, green consumption and system change.

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Why behaviour change is at the heart of sustainable business

Why behaviour change is at the heart of sustainable business | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Brands must find ways to be innovative in order to push people towards sustainable living without preaching to them...

 

Good article on the need for companies to take leadership in changing consumer behaviour. This article is sponsored by Unilever in the context of its exciting Sustainable Living campaign.

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In 2012 we need to fight the instincts that make us want more

In 2012 we need to fight the instincts that make us want more | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
We will always have the urge to consume more than we need, but recognising this as a problem is the first step towards recovery, says Val Curtis...

 

Good article on sustainable consumption in the Guardian's Sustainable Business blog. I like in particular this statement:

 

"We need to accept the fact that the eco-warrior in us is weak against the force of stone age desire".

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From Conspicuous Consumption to Collective Consumption

From Conspicuous Consumption to Collective Consumption | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

In the Social Europe Journal, Nat O'Connor looks at the challenge of sustainable consumption for social-democrat politicians and trade union leaders.

 

He rightly questions "three 'sacred cows' of traditional social democratic economic policy that may need to be genetically modified to become sustainable"

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Why does every person need 200kg of steel a year?

Why does every person need 200kg of steel a year? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

BBC News has this provocative article on the raw materials and resources we use in our global economy. The boring statistics of how much stuff we need are translated into an understandable but disturbing metaphor. 

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Why is our consumption falling?

Why is our consumption falling? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
Everyone believes that consumption is out of control. But is it? From food to paper and water, Britain has gradually been guzzling less over the last decade. Why?

 

Exciting article in the Guardian: has the UK reached "peak stuff" and do we see the first signs of real decoupling between economic growth and resource use? Chris Goodall, Tim Jackson and Andrew Simms take on the debate.

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Report: Consumer Futures 2020 | Forum for the Future

Report: Consumer Futures 2020 | Forum for the Future | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

A new report by Forum for the Future with support from Sainsbury's and Unilever explores how existing  unsustainable patterns of consumption and consumer behaviour can shift to more sustainability.

 

An absolute must-read for anyone interested in the transition to sustainable production and consumption.

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Radical Simplicity and the Middle-Class - Exploring the Lifestyle Implications of a ‘Great Disruption’

Radical Simplicity and the Middle-Class - Exploring the Lifestyle Implications of a ‘Great Disruption’ | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"How would the ordinary middle-class consumer – I should say middle-class citizen – deal with a lifestyle of radical simplicity? By radical simplicity I essentially mean a very low but biophysically sufficient material standard of living, a form of life that will be described in more detail below. In this essay I want to suggest that radical simplicity would not be as bad as it might first seem, provided we were ready for it and wisely negotiated its arrival, both as individuals and as communities. Indeed, I am tempted to suggest that radical simplicity is exactly what consumer cultures need to shake themselves awake from their comfortable slumber; that radical simplicity would be in our own, immediate, self-interests."

 

Gloomy analysis of our consumer society after post-growth collapse. Forbidden reading for anyone who believes "our way of life is non-negotiable". Truth is, nature will not negotiate and things are likely to be a bit less "nice" than described in this article.

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New report: Sustainable ways of living are SPREADing across Europe

New report finds that a growing number of people across Europe are changing the ways in which they live, move, and consume in exchange for higher quality, less impact on the environment, and that saves money.

 

The report published by the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) is the outcome of a  research project financed by the EU Commission called SPREAD Sustainable Lifestyles 2050.

 

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“Green shift” in industries could save $2 trillion for major world economies

“Green shift” in industries could save $2 trillion for major world economies | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

A new report by the World Economic Forum makes the case for an emergency transformation to sustainable consumption in a resource-constrained world.

 

The report "More with less: scaling sustainable consumption and resource efficiency" is an absolute must-read.

 

More about this report will be available from tomorrow via my 3E Intelligence blog http://3eintelligence.wordpress.com .

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3 Must-Have Apps for a Sustainable 2012

3 Must-Have Apps for a Sustainable 2012 | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
2012 is not going to be easy. But these apps will help you navigate the likely turbulence of the next 12 months.

 

Sally Uren of the UK's Forum for the Future presents 3 sustainability trends for 2012: rethink capitalism, get serious about collaborative consumption and take sustainability to the consumer. Interesting read.

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The New Story of Stuff: Can We Consume Less?

The New Story of Stuff: Can We Consume Less? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it
A new study finds that Britons are consuming less than they did a decade ago, with similar patterns being seen across Europe. Could this be the beginning of a trend in developed countries? Might we be reaching “peak stuff”?

 

Interesting article in the Yale Environment360 blog: are we witnessing a decline in resource use in developed countries?

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Can We Really Make Sustainable Consumption Work?

Can We Really Make Sustainable Consumption Work? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"We've always looked at the problem of sustainable consumption as needing to convince individuals to buy less. But the real challenge may be in convincing companies to sell less -- and to make what they sell more sustainable." (Source: GreenBiz)


"In order to provide for the needs of an ever-growing population on a planet with finite resources, we need to improve the sustainability of the products we buy and sell. Businesses can start this transition by getting closer to consumers, educating them on how they can reduce their impacts, in order to make more sustainable product offerings a sustainable business model over the long term."

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Debt cancellation without chaos – a programme for the Occupy movement?

Debt cancellation without chaos – a programme for the Occupy movement? | The Great Transition | Scoop.it

"... we need a scheme with a pattern of rewards and incentives that is more appropriate to the times that we live in. This could be achieved by giving people the wherewithall to reduce their debts if they have debts, but also giving the same amount to people who have no debts, or have low debts, which they could use too – not on a consumption binge, but on green investment to bring down our ecological debts (the carbon intensity of our lifestyles)."

Very interesting article on debt cancellation.

 

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