Dennis Meadows: "Growth versus Development"  

Posted by Big Gav in ,

Both frogblog and The Oil Drum have pointed to this talk by Dennis Meadows (co-author of the widely misunderstood Limits To Growth) in Davos last year - Dennis Meadows: "Growth versus Development".

Today there is a lot of worry and concern--you see it in the papers, you see it in the speeches of politicians--about climate change, about environmental damage, about falling water tables, about food and oil scarcity, and so forth. These are really not problems, they are symptoms. It is like your friend has cancer, and therefore has also a headache. The headache is a symptom. It is not in itself the problem. You can take care of the headache--you can give pain killers, or something, but if the headache goes away you don't imagine that the problem is solved.

Climate change, energy scarcity, these things are symptoms. Maybe we could solve them, maybe we won't. But even if we do, it doesn't eliminate the problem. The problem is physical growth, continued population expansion, continued increase in material standards of living, in a world that has finite limits.

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