Transcript of "Understanding sustainable development"
Towards sustainability Outlook, models and methods Economics Where can I start today? Stephen Hinton, Sustainable Development Consultant
The end of the oil age has been coming a long time 1800s Start of oil age Peak Oil production per capita 1979 2008 Runaway oil price Food price hike Ecological and Climate System destabilisation? Peak of Oil Discovery 1968 Activities surpass biocapacity 1988 Peak soil, phosphorous, water, etc Oil production surpasses discovery 1980 2005 Peak of cheap oil production Global Economic downturn Oil production per capita globally in time
During that time, gigantic, fuel-dependant supply chains have developed <ul><li>Complex business and banking models accompany these chains For each kg of product they supply, they release 30 kg of waste </li></ul><ul><li>Complex business and banking models accompany these chains For each kg of product they supply, they release 30 kg of waste </li></ul>
The long complicated supply chains of today are sensitive to fuel prices and emission standards extract- tion raw materials compo- nents modules & parts assembly whole sale retail use scrap
Even the egg is the end result of a long, complex, chemical, industrial supply chain Even your breakfast egg
Where are we headed now? Catastrophe Where are we headed today?
New situations call for a new approach: innovation Quick fix Use known solution Innovate Business As usual New Old Situation Duration Temporary Permanent Source: Peter Drucker
The sustainability model Healthy Environment Sustainability is a lasting dynamic balance between these factors Healthy Individuals Thriving Communities Organizations in economic balance
People don’t want money, they want the services money can buy The service Operation and maintenance Construction Minerals and biomass Working hours
The matrix of investment choices HI HI LO LO OPERATION & MAINTENANCE CONSTRUCTION & COMMISSIONING INCREASE EFFICIENCY (e.g energy wasting housing) Compare of strategies for technical and social infrastructure “living arrangements” Use wisely (e.g hydropower) INCREASE USE e.g. baskets, bikes BUILD ONCE USE A HUNDRED YEARS Make, use, recycle REPLACE (e.g. car based transport system)
The largest energy saving opportunity is in food
If energy prices continue to rise the best investment is (c) in sustainable technology Accumulated costs Time A B C A= accumulated costs if energy prices remain stable B= energy prices increase C= accumulated costs after investment in renewables The price you pay accumulated over time for housing, food and transport. Three scenarios
Corporate structure hinders local investment <ul><li>The majority of companies are small and medium size </li></ul><ul><li>The majority of profits are made by large publicly traded corporations </li></ul><ul><li>Most capital is in large corporations ( pension schemes, funds, insurance etc) </li></ul><ul><li>Eg every eighth £ is spent in Tesco’s </li></ul>
Financial capital means nothing without cheap and abundant energy <ul><li>Social capital more important </li></ul><ul><li>Owning means of production (eg. Land, water power, low maintenance buildings) </li></ul>
Why relocalisation is the answer Peak oil, energy price rises Collapse of world economy Destabilisation of climate system People’s lack of belief in ”business as usual” relocalisation
Two main models of sustainable investment Arrange conditional loans to small local enterprises Use facilities at production price as long as your money is in the business Join a cooperative Buy land and energy capture facilities Learn to live together (100 friends and a farmer) Two methods to finance local production of essential services
Things to consider <ul><li>Get to understand the situation. You need to understand it for yourself as corporates and governments talk in their own interests </li></ul><ul><li>Get out of debt </li></ul><ul><li>Review your housing. Is it energy efficient, close to public transport and services? </li></ul><ul><li>Get to know local small businesses and with others look to small capital loan possibilities </li></ul><ul><li>Subscribe to local organics food box </li></ul><ul><li>Ditch the car (carpooling, local minibuses etc ) </li></ul><ul><li>Join groups </li></ul><ul><li>Learn the skills of the basics </li></ul><ul><li>Invest in renewable energy </li></ul><ul><li>Find a way to own land </li></ul><ul><li>Find your tribe </li></ul><ul><li>Work locally in your neighbors’ association, parent teachers, local council etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Consider all the above again from the point of view of small business owner or employee </li></ul>
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