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Chelsea Green Blog

WATCH: Simran Sethi Interviews Van Jones at Bioneers by the Bay

Two of our favorite sustainability writers, Simran Sethi (co-author of Ethical Markets) and Van Jones (author of The Green Collar Economy [HarperOne, 2008]), had a lively onstage discussion at Bioneers by the Bay 2008. The two discussed the false opposition of economic growth vs. environmental stewardship (We can’t have both? Of course we can!), growing the renewable energy industry, and how to rescue the US economy.
Van Jones: This breakdown is horrible. Awful. Frightening. And inevitable. And inevitable. Because we got sold a bill of goods in this country. For the past thirty years, we tried to run our economy based on consumption, not production; based on debt, not smart savings and thrift, like our grandparents; and based on environmental and ecological destruction, not ecological restoration. Well, that is, by definition, not sustainable. You cannot build an economy up on credit cards. That’s what we have been trying to do. So US consumption became the center of the world economy, not US production. Now we have this horrible breakdown. But it represents a possibility of a breakthrough, back to an economy that makes sense. We’ve got to stop borrowing from overseas and start building again here at home. We’ve got to stop relying on credit from overseas and start relying on our creativity here at home. That is the pathway to a sustainable future.


The Miracle of Farming: Toward a Bio-Abundant Future

Charles and Perrine Hervé-Gruyer’s Le Ferme du Bec Hellouin is a celebrated model of innovative, ecological agriculture in Europe, connected to national and international organizations addressing food security, heralded by celebrity chefs as well as the Slow Food movement, and featured in the inspiring César and COLCOA award-winning documentary film, Demain (Tomorrow).In this excerpt from their […] Read More

Three Principles to Survive the Future

What guiding principles will you need to not just survive the future, but imagine a better one? Surviving the Future is a story drawn from the fertile ground of the late David Fleming’s extraordinary Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It. That hardback consists of four hundred and four interlinked dictionary entries, […] Read More

Sow Seeds: Stop Walking Around Doing Nothing

“In the last one hundred years, 94 percent of seed varieties available at the turn of the century in America and considered a part of the human commons have been lost.”That’s one of the key takeaways in award-winning author and activist Janisse Ray’s book, The Seed Underground: A Growing Revolution to Save Food. In her book, Ray […] Read More

True or false? Figs contain dead wasps

They are trees of life and trees of knowledge. They are wish-fulfillers … rainforest royalty … more precious than gold. They are the fig trees, and they have affected humanity in profound but little-known ways. Gods, Wasps and Stranglers tells their amazing story.Fig trees fed our pre-human ancestors, influenced diverse cultures and played key roles […] Read More

Eight Seed-Saving Myths

You don’t have to move to Svalbard, Norway in order to have access to a seed bank.Author and plant breeder Carol Deppe believes that every gardener should have her own seed bank. Even if you aren’t a seed saver, you should have your own seed bank. Even if you never experience any disaster beyond the […] Read More
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