Blog Archives

News from FEASTA – founded by Richard Douthwaite

 

Caroline Whyte, who has been involved with Feasta since 2002, studied ecological economics at Mälardalen University in Sweden.

Browsing the site today I was reminded that the subject of her masters thesis was the relationship between central banking and sustainability  She notes:

“Back when I did a masters thesis on central banking and sustainability in 2006, there was very little official recognition on the part of any government or central bank that private banks are directly responsible for money creation – although the Swedish central banker I interviewed for my research acknowledged it immediately when it came up, and if you looked hard enough you could already find references to it elsewhere too”.

Early in December a mailing brought news of a groundbreaking evening on soil & climate action, at Cloughjordan ecovillage in Tipperary (below), with delicious food from ‘said soil’ and a call to action on the dancefloor. There was also art, live music, poetry and DJs as part of the Global Green Christmas Party and World Soils Day. Dr. Ollie Moore, who manages Cloughjordan’s community farm was in discussion with UCD & Friends of the Earth’s Cara Augustenborg.

 

Another discovery on FEASTA’s website was Mike Sandler’s article Climate dividends and the Yellow Vests – extract below:

Climate dividends, which return money from a carbon price back to people, provide a direct solution to the yellow vests concerns, while putting income inequality on equal footing with climate concerns.  They would counteract the regressive impacts of diesel fuel charges, and send money to the very people who need it most.

The yellow vests undoubtedly want a livable planet for their children.  Climate dividends can help change the perception that addressing climate change will be costly to working class people.

Canada is starting to look at dividends as part of their carbon pricing strategy. Perhaps Prime Minister Justin Trudeau could make a call to President Macron and suggest offering climate dividends to the yellow vests.

Climate dividends is a simple solution (based on more complex economics, but let’s leave that for later), and the benefit to the public is that, when paired with an economywide cap, it will reduce emissions, return money to households, and provide a start to a universal basic income.

The main obstacle facing climate dividends is that many politicians are less motivated to give the money back to people, when they could instead spend the money on big projects (such as high-speed rail in California)

Climate dividends could be the solutions the yellow vests are looking for.  Will Macron or others recognize it in time?

 

 

 

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News from the Foundation for the Economics of Sustainability: residential courses

feasta-header-2

Cad a dhéanfaimid feasta gan adhmad? Tá deireadh na gcoillte ar lár

What will we do in the future without wood? The end of the forests has come.

Feasta‘s aim is “to identify the characteristics (economic, cultural and environmental) of a truly sustainable society, articulate how the necessary transition can be effected and promote the implementation of the measures required for this purpose”. (http://www.feasta.org).

Today the challenges seem greater than ever. How can the human species learn to live in harmony with the Earth, the rest of the natural world and with each other? For the last 15 years the Retreat Lodges at Rossbeigh, Co Kerry have proved to be a good place to think and talk about these issues: built with stone walls and a slate roof, the windows look out over tidal marshes and sand-dunes to the forty-mile long Dingle Peninsula and across Dingle Bay to the Blasket Islands and the Atlantic.

John Jopling is now re-launching the week-long Feasta residential courses held here for the last 16 years. The following programme is proposed:

  •  Series title: “Learning for the Future”.
  •  The courses will be held once a year – possibly increasing to twice a year
  •  They will ideally be announced 6 months ahead, naming subjects and key people.
  •  The first week in the new format will be the last week of June 2017.
  •  Each week will feature three or four main subjects.
  •  Each subject will be led by a key person.
  •  There will be 8 or 10 other participants.
  •  In addition there will be time for single session topics using “Open Space”.
  •  These might include talks about eg local wildlife.
  •  and/or ideas people are working on.
  •  Reading matter may be circulated to intended participants in advance.

Relevant topics could include:

  •  Gaia, Dark Mountain, systems-change and emergence, the Viable Systems Model.
  •  Climate change, biodiversity, the interdependence of species, other global boundaries.
  •  governance systems and economic systems such as De-growth
  •  the role of compassion and non-violence.
  •  commons, localisation, global citizenship, community ownership, co-ops, co-housing, community currencies, permaculture.
  •  topics such as wealth, inequality, ownership, corporate structures, money, taxes, citizens income, energy, cities, nano-technology.

Please feel free to suggest other topics – but be prepared to present them and/or suggest people who will, as the guarantee of well prepared discussions by people with expertise is important to making the courses a success.

feasta-iconNote also: The world’s first conference on world basic income was held in Manchester on 4th February 2017.

The event explored a new practical solution to global inequality and poverty. Feasta’s Caroline Whyte, who is involved in the CapGlobalCarbon campaign, was on a panel discussing practicalities.