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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.


Why Modern Wheat Is Making Us Sick

Why is modern wheat making us sick?  That’s the question posed by author Eli Rogosa in her new book Restoring Heritage Grains.Wheat is the most widely grown crop on our planet, yet industrial breeders have transformed this ancient staff of life into a commodity of yield and profit—witness the increase in gluten intolerance and ‘wheat […] Read More

A Dictionary to Survive the Future

When British economist David Fleming died unexpectedly in 2010, he left behind his great unpublished work, a masterpiece more than thirty years in the making—an intellectually evocative and inspiring dictionary, Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It. In it, Fleming examined the consequences of an economy that destroys the very foundations—ecological, […] Read More

Overshoot, Collapse, and Creating a Better Future

In 2016, Earth Overshoot Day happened on August 8—the day when we’ve exhausted the planet’s resources for the year, and are essentially borrowing from future years to maintain our existence today.Perhaps you celebrated this day with a counter-solution: a vegetarian meal, telecommuted, or turned off the air conditioning. There’s a lot more you could be […] Read More

Plants & Pests: Will Bonsall’s Advice on “Wee Beasties” in the Garden

“From a plant’s point of view there is little difference between a cutworm, a woodchuck, a blight spore, and, for that matter, us.”“These are all things that in one way or another prey upon it. It is an inevitable constraint of all living things: We escape one peril only to ultimately succumb to another,” so […] Read More

To Create Climate-Secure Foodscapes, Think Like a Plant

The techniques and prophetic vision for achieving food security in the face of climate change contained in Gary Paul Nabhan’s Growing Food in a Hotter, Drier Land may well need to be implemented across most of North America over the next half-century, and are already applicable in most of the semiarid West, Great Plains, and […] Read More
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