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The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New…
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The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality (udgave 2011)

af Richard Heinberg

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingSamtaler
21717122,841 (3.75)Ingen
Economists insist that recovery is at hand, yet unemployment remains high, real estate values continue to sink, and governments stagger under record deficits. The End of Growth proposes a startling diagnosis: humanity has reached a fundamental turning point in its economic history. The expansionary trajectory of industrial civilization is colliding with non-negotiable natural limits.Richard Heinberg's latest landmark work goes to the heart of the ongoing financial crisis, explaining how and why it occurred, and what we must do to avert the worst potential outcomes. Written in an engaging, highly readable style, it shows why growth is being blocked by three factors:Resource depletionEnvironmental impactsCrushing levels of debtThese converging limits will force us to re-evaluate cherished economic theories and to reinvent money and commerce.The End of Growth describes what policy makers, communities, and families can do to build a new economy that operates within Earth's budget of energy and resources. We can thrive during the transition if we set goals that promote human and environmental well-being, rather than continuing to pursue the now-unattainable prize of ever-expanding GDP.… (mere)
Medlem:bberryhill
Titel:The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality
Forfattere:Richard Heinberg
Info:New Society Publishers (2011), Edition: Original, Paperback, 336 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:
Nøgleord:sustainability

Work Information

The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality af Richard Heinberg

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Engelsk (17)  Hollandsk (1)  Alle sprog (18)
Viser 1-5 af 18 (næste | vis alle)
This book raises many interesting/serious issues, and a few interesting ideas.

I think most people probably have some idea, perhaps only very generally, that e.g. oil is not in infinite supply; fewer people may have thought about other resources (water is something folks may have heard about.) Potash, rare earths, and some others come up if you read e.g. the Economist or some other similarly serious publications (I'm guessing probably not in USA Today...)

I think less often thought about is that these material resource issues all depend a great deal on energy supplies, and that energy supplies, in turn, rely on materials. Moving to renewables is not only difficult because of economic and technological/scientific issues, but because of material and energy issues; which in turn become economic and then technological/scientific issues.

The effect all that will have on the economy, again, might be thought about infrequently...

You get the idea, I think, of what the book discusses and how it argues. So why only three stars?

Despite what the book says addressing this very point, I don't see a neo-Malthusian crash coming; I do think credible, *major* economic reforms, and serious political changes, are needed re: energy generation and use, scientific and technological research and investment, environmental protections and harm mitigation. I think economics (both accounting and finance and "economics" as politics) needs to not only abandon the model of externalizing as many costs as possible, but adopt the model of internalizing as many costs as reasonable (obviously, at some point, you do have draw a circle around what you consider your model/system and, hence, what you are accounting for.) If we don't do those things... life will get very miserable for some people, even a lot of people, "progress" will likely grind to a halt for a while...

I guess, for better or for worse, the book did not convince me I need to live on a commune and learn to shoe a horse. Which is where the book veers off to in it's last chapter, amid some (very interesting) discussion about alternative currencies and alternative economies. I don't see a collapse of high-tech civilizations as credible future scenario. Again, I admit that things could get hairy... but I'm not investing in yurts just yet. ( )
  dcunning11235 | Aug 12, 2023 |
Niet gemakkelijk om in één adem uit te lezen. Berust op een waarheid als een koe - dat onze planeet en alles erop eindig is - en dat ons economisch denken gebaseerd is op oneindige groei. De huidige financiële en economische crisis (2008 en later) is in dit opzicht slechts het beginpunt van een eindeloos conflict tussen deze twee uitgangspunten. Een radicaal andere denkwijze en handelswijze zal nodig zijn om onze beschaving te redden en te blijven evolueren. Deze evolutie zal binnen echter binnen nauwere grenzen moeten geschieden dan nu het geval is. ( )
  Nietneb | Jun 13, 2013 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
A tough read. Discouraging. Depressing. Not really easy to refute.

Most book reviews, it's easy enough to focus on the writing itself, the presentation of the content, and less the content itself in many ways.

Not so with The End of Growth by Richard Heinberg. The content is so front and center, it is unescapable. Can one stare directly into the sun?

For the moment, for the days at hand, perhaps thankfulness--not fear--is our most reasonable response.

The best books seem to be among the ones that steer us to deepest, layered gratitude.

(This book review was done in participation of the LibraryThing Early Reviewer program: http://www.librarything.com/er/list) ( )
1 stem KenoticRunner | Jul 19, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
This book starts out with misleading oversimplifications.

There is a problem with his vagueness about time frame. In first page of chapter 1, "our economic system is set for a dramatic, and for all practical purposes permanent, reset to a much lower level of function." This is a good way to start talking about the next fifty years. But we can expect the next ten years to be dominated by the same dynamics as the last 100. There may be an oil price shock, as in the 70s. There may be a gigantic crash is financial markets, causing a catastrophic global depression. If so, the dynamic will be like 1929 and the thirties.

Yes, total usage of fossil fuels will start long term decline within a few decades. But total value of all capital goods in use will continue to grow exponentially far into the future. Even making do with less energy, we will produce higher value consumer goods that are smaller, more complex, and smarter, and make better use of properties of materials. Even after total population stops growing the total world economy will grow exponentially very far into the future, just as it has for the past five thousand years.

Also, the world economy will evolve by becoming more complex and differentiated, doing more with a given amount of material and energy, and that evolution itself could be called growth. ( )
1 stem johnclaydon | Apr 25, 2012 |
This review was written for LibraryThing Early Reviewers.
Richard Heinberg's 2011 book, explains the link between our economy and natural resource depletion. As most economic theories are based on a growth-only model, we are mostly unprepared for a future of limited resources, specifically oil and other forms of energy. Oil production peaked in the United States in 1970 and world production followed in 2005. Take inexpensive oil out of the equation and we are left with an economy that is radically different from what we now know.

The author's other point is that economic expansion depends on increasing the money supply via the fractional reserve banking system. Money is created when it is loaned and the system can only keep expanding when more borrowing occurs. When there is no more money to lend or debts failed to be repaid, the money supply contracts and with it goes the whole economy. For more, read "The Web of Debt" by Ellen Brown.

The author believes that there is no possible means of sustaining the current standard of living and that economic contraction will occur. The last chapter, "Managing Contraction, Redefining Progress" is optimistic and offers transition advice. Learn to do more with less, invest in local, organic food systems and bond with your neighbors and other like-minded individuals. I highly recommend this book as a source for understanding some of the transitions taking place not only in the United States but throughout the rest of the world. ( )
  RChurch | Feb 9, 2012 |
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Economists insist that recovery is at hand, yet unemployment remains high, real estate values continue to sink, and governments stagger under record deficits. The End of Growth proposes a startling diagnosis: humanity has reached a fundamental turning point in its economic history. The expansionary trajectory of industrial civilization is colliding with non-negotiable natural limits.Richard Heinberg's latest landmark work goes to the heart of the ongoing financial crisis, explaining how and why it occurred, and what we must do to avert the worst potential outcomes. Written in an engaging, highly readable style, it shows why growth is being blocked by three factors:Resource depletionEnvironmental impactsCrushing levels of debtThese converging limits will force us to re-evaluate cherished economic theories and to reinvent money and commerce.The End of Growth describes what policy makers, communities, and families can do to build a new economy that operates within Earth's budget of energy and resources. We can thrive during the transition if we set goals that promote human and environmental well-being, rather than continuing to pursue the now-unattainable prize of ever-expanding GDP.

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