Eco-Tech for a smarter Planet??

  • Brillliant technological innovations will be absoulutely essential, eventually. But if introduced before the World adopts a steady state economy, all they will do is hasten climate breakdown.. I have sent the gist of these words as a response online to the Financial Times’ article with the same title as this weblog post, but adding the question marks.

The graph in the recent EU Copernicus report  showing that for the last seven years World temperature has broken all previous records indicate how grave the threat is.

An important part of why so little has been done to stave off a ;Tragedy of the Commons’ catastrophe is that to do so would conflict with economic activity. Ingenious schemes which avoid any economic downturn are possible, but as none such have yet been put in place pre-crisis, an economic slow-down now seems increasingly inevitable. Don’ fly, stop driving, have fewer childfren . . . Yes, there are solutions, but each one destroys a source of wealth creation.

In his book Poverty and Progress,Richard Wilkinson gives the example of the Siane, a tribe in New Guinea who still had a stone age technology, who distinguished between ‘necessities., which were shared unconditionally. and e verything else, which was recognizably  what more sophisticated cultures would recognize as a market. Wilkinson point out that the purpose was that

 “everyone had an identity of interest when dealing whey tith ecological limits”.

This was a moneyless example of a universal basic income.

Why then has this  imple idea not been adopted world wide?i have partially answered this by the conflict betweencurrent economc activity and ecological sustainability, but the question can be taken a step further.

Why  has the strateg y adopted by the Siane not been adopted more widely?

A partial answer is that most tribes had neighbours. When   each reahe dresource limits due to poulation expansion, the immediatethreat would be their neighbours.. According  to Jared Diaond, in The rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee, there were 37 genocides between 1492 (disco very of America) and 1990 (publication). Ther have been three since.

But on Rapanui there were no neighbours. The Siane were in practice isolated by the mountainous terrain. My hypothesis is that they had had a brush with the Tragedy similar to Rapanui (Easter Island).

But a neoliberal ethos still holds sway in the places where decisions are still being made.anybod

Can anyone help me get this into the mainstream?

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