Utopian ideas on climate change will get us precisely nowhere
Consumption - of cars, flights and more - is how most people measure progress, and campaigners must concentrate on reducing the harm this does. Back-to-nature idealism will surely fail
Urging people to stop consuming stuff in order to slow the rate of climate change is a gambit that is doomed to fail. It would be helpful if shoppers put off buying a suit or installing a new kitchen, but it’s not going to happen. Demonising those who fly to Barcelona for a long weekend is another tactic that will have almost no impact.
It’s not for nothing that economists base many of their assumptions on populations having unlimited wants. Most people strain to acquire stuff that the rich have long taken for granted. Telling them to switch off this desire has never worked and is unlikely to do so now, even when the future of the planet is at stake.Continue reading...