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The Ecology of Commerce Revised Edition: A Declaration of Sustainability (Collins Business Essentials) Paperback – October 26, 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
Before I read this book, I used to think that business and the environment were inherently at odds. But then I realized that this doesn't have to be the case. According to Hawken, the problem lies in our economic system's design, and no amount of management or programs is going to change that. In order to make things better, we're going to have to rethink our economic structure, and in that possibility is where Mr. Hawken finds hope. As he so eloquently put it:
"To create an enduring society, we will need a system of commerce and production where each and every act is inherently sustainable and restorative...Just as every action in an industrial society leads to environmental degradation, regardless of intention, we must design a system where the opposite is true, where doing good is like falling off a log, where the natural, everyday acts of work and life accumulate into a better world as a matter of course, not as a matter of conscious altruism." (Hawken, p.Read more ›
The author excels at painting a holistic view of the realities that are not being addressed by the media or by scholars in anything other than piecemeal fashion.
The bottom line: what we are doing now in the face of accelerating decay (changes and losses that used to take 10,000 years now take three years) is the equivalent of "trying to bail out the Titanic with teaspoons." On page 21-22 the author states that we are using 10,000 days of energy creation every day, or 27 years of energy each day.
This is a practical book. In brief, we can monetize the costs of the decay, we can show people the *real* cost of each product and in this way inspire both boycotts (of wasteful products) and boycotts (Jim Turner's term) of solar energy and long-lasting repairable products.
The author appears to be both pro-business and very wise in seeing that the cannot save the environment by destroying business, but rather must save business so it can save the environment--we must help business understand that doing more with less is what they must do to survive.
The author includes a recurring theme from the literature, that diversity is an option generator, and hence one of the most precious aspects of life on Earth. Diversity is the ultimate source of wealth, and anything that reduces diversity is impoverishing the planet and mankind. In a magnificent turn of phrase, the author states that the loss of a species is the loss of a biological library.Read more ›
Hawken points out that our pursuit of material gain has grown to be such an accepted goal and one that has been so successful for the industrial nations of the world, that it is difficult for most people to realize that the western standard of living cannot be sustained much longer.
Hawken suggests that it is entirely possible to create companies that are profitable but do not destroy the environment - either directly or indirectly. The problem in most Western countries is the limited vision of environmental proponents. They are doing a good job addressing recycling and reducing pollution, but are missing crucial broader principles.
Hawken recommends taxation on pollution. Hawken cautions that the public must stand vigilant guard on issues of protecting the environment, because our government is run by those who have vested interests in corporate profits rather than in the general good of all.
This is an outstanding book about healing our environment, the conduct of business, governmental management of both - and most importantly, about healing our indifference to the crises of planetary pollution and our limited healing of these problems. This book is very highly recommended - despite its publication a dozen years ago.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a book that everyone, who cares about forging a new economic/environmental bond, should read.Published 2 months ago by terrybtt
The insights provided by Hawken are priceless for the creating of a sustainable future on planet Earth. It is a book about balance and solutions, not blame. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Rob Williams
This book identified the need for environmental reform at the business level. Hawken stated that sustainability needs to be made a goal for businesses, and provided suggestions on... Read morePublished 6 months ago by Rachael
This book is a must read by any legislator or citizen concerned about maintaining a sustainable economy.Published 7 months ago by Elisabeth Radow
A brilliantly written, thought provoking, system changing book. If you are looking for cogent explanations of the need for change, you'll find them here. Read morePublished 15 months ago by Dr. Artie K