Every time a civilization is in crisis, there is a return of the commons’ — An I nterview with Michel Bauwens

The commons are nothing new. History has always counted citizens pooling resources and managing them collectively and autonomously.

https://goodmenproject.com/featured-content/every-time-a-civilization-is-in-crisis-there-is-a-return-of-the-commons-an-interview-with-michel-bauwens

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Carbon footprint of tourism in Barcelona

Abstract – Tourism Management – Volume 70, February 2019, Pages 491-504

This study evaluates the carbon footprint (CF) of Barcelona tourist activity taking into account the above 30 million visitors who visit the city every year. This study analyzes the main sources of emissions considering direct (Scope 1) and indirect emissions (Scope 2 and 3) as a consequence of energy use. This research has been carried out in close collaboration with Barcelona City Council and in the context of the new Strategic Tourism Plan for Barcelona city. The impacts of arrival and departure transport, accommodation, leisure and professional activities and Intra-urban transport from Barcelona city were all included. The total CF of Barcelona tourist activity is about 9.6MtCO2eq/year, which represents an emission of 96.9 kg CO2eq/visitor·day. The main source of emissions is arrival and departure transport (95.6%), and particularly aviation. These results show that if substantial reductions in CO2 emissions are to be achieved, initiatives strategically focused on transport and also accommodation are necessary.

Highlights
• The total CF of Barcelona tourist activity is about 9.6MtCO2eq/year, which represents 96.9 kg CO2eq/visitor·day.
• The average carbon footprint of a tourist is 111.6 kg CO2 eq/day and 43.0 kg CO2 eq/day for a day-tripper.
• The main source of emissions is arrival and departure transport (95.6%), and particularly aviation.
• Regarding GHG emissions in destination, accommodation is responsible for 75.6% of them.
• If tourist destinations had studies on their carbon footprint, it could be used for managing their tourist offer.

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0261517718302206?via%3Dihub

https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tourman.2018.09.012

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Growing pain: the delusion of boundless economic growth

“To meet the demands of the Green New Deal, which proposes to convert the US economy to zero emissions, renewable power by 2030, there will be a lot more of these mines gouged into the crust of the earth. That’s because nearly every renewable energy source depends upon non-renewable and frequently hard-to-access minerals: solar panels use indium, turbines use neodymium, batteries use lithium, and all require kilotons of steel, tin, silver, and copper.

https://communemag.com/between-the-devil-and-the-green-new-deal

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The Problem is Capitalism – George Monbiot, Guardian 25th April 2019

While some people have rejected capitalism gladly and swiftly, I’ve done so slowly and reluctantly. Part of the reason was that I could see no clear alternative. But as I’ve grown older, I’ve come to recognise two things. First, that it is the system, rather than any variant of the system, which drives us inexorably towards disaster. Second, that you do not have to produce a definitive alternative to say that capitalism is failing. The statement stands in its own right. But it also demands another, and different, effort to develop a new system.

https://www.monbiot.com/2019/04/30/the-problem-is-capitalism/

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Why degrowth is the only responsible way forward | openDemocracy

A reduction of economic activity is necessary and just – and can lead to human flourishing. To sustain the natural basis of our life, we must slow down. We have to reduce the amount of extraction, pollution, and waste throughout our economy. This implies less production, less consumption, and probably also less work.
The responsibility to do so must lie mainly on the rich, who currently enjoy a disproportionate share of our resources. But we should also do things differently, as much of today’s economic activity is of little benefit to human wellbeing.

https://www.opendemocracy.net/en/oureconomy/why-degrowth-only-responsible-way-forward/

A recent “sound bite” I’ve seen also puts this very starkly.

Our globalised world finds itself caught on the horns of a seemingly impossible dilemma – either cease growing, and so collapse the economy on which we all depend, or continue to grow until we overwhelm and destroy the ecosystems on which we all depend.
https://www.tikkun.org/the-sequel-life-after-economic-growth

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The Sequel: Life After Economic Growth

By Shaun Chamberlin | November 15, 2018

Our globalised world finds itself caught on the horns of a seemingly impossible dilemma – either cease growing, and so collapse the economy on which we all depend, or continue to grow until we overwhelm and destroy the ecosystems on which we all depend.

https://www.tikkun.org/the-sequel-life-after-economic-growth

Shaun Chamberlin authored the Transition movement’s second book, The Transition Timeline, and has served as both chair of the Ecological Land Co-operative and a director of Global Justice Now. He is the executive producer of 2019 film The Sequel: What Will Follow Our Troubled Civilisation? and editor of several books, including David Fleming’s posthumous Lean Logic and Surviving the Future. His website is www.darkoptimism.org

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Research on Degrowth. Annual Review of Environment and Resources

Annual Review of Environment and Resources Giorgos Kallis, Vasilis Kostakis, Steffen Lange, Barbara Muraca, Susan Paulson, Matthias Schmelzer

A good (but dense) 26 page overview of degrowth research

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Contents
1. INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.2
2. HISTORY: ORIGINS OF THE GROWTH PARADIGM . . . . . . . . . . .. . . . . . . . 4.4
3. ECOLOGICAL ECONOMICS: THE LIMITS OF GREEN GROWTH . .. . . . . . . . . . . . 4.6
4. MANAGING WITHOUT GROWTH: THE ECONOMICS OF DEGROWTH . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.8
5. ANTHROPOLOGY & SOCIAL SCIENCES: STUDIES OF SOCIETIES LIVING WITHOUT GROWTH . 4.11
6. TECHNOLOGY STUDIES AND DEGROWTH . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.13
7. POLITICAL SCIENCE: DEMOCRACY AND DEGROWTH . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.16
8. CONCLUSION: A DEGROWTH TRANSITION? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4.18

Scholars and activists mobilize increasingly the term degrowth when producing knowledge critical of the ideology and costs of growth-based development. Degrowth signals a radical political and economic reorganization leading to reduced resource and energy use. The degrowth hypothesis posits that such a trajectory of social transformation is necessary, desirable, and possible ; the conditions of its realization require additional study. Research on degrowth has reinvigorated the limits to growth debate with critical examination of the historical, cultural, social, and political forces that have made economic growth a dominant objective. Here we review studies of economic stability in the absence of growth and of societies that have managed well without growth. We reflect on forms of technology and democracy compatible with degrowth and discuss plausible openings for a degrowth transition. This dynamic and productive research agenda asks inconvenient questions that sustainability sciences can no longer afford to ignore.

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