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Saving the Planet: How to Shape an Environmentally Substainable Global Economy (Worldwatch Environmental Alert Series) Hardcover – November, 1991

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Editorial Reviews

From Kirkus Reviews

To remake our outmoded notions of economics--and to save the global environment--the Worldwatch Institute delivers a comprehensive, persuasive guide to achieving a sustainable economy based on energy efficiency and reuse, rather than waste, of resources. Using an analogy to the denial that ran rampant on the Titanic, the authors of the Institute's yearly State of the World series stress the urgent need to move away from a fossil-fuel economy in order to counteract global warming. ``Renewables'' are the key: Brown and his colleagues present tables demonstrating that wind and solar energy will create more jobs than coal and oil development will, and argue that the hazards of nuclear waste and accident obviate the viability of nuclear power. ``When it comes to solar technologies, today's political leaders, still captivated by coal and nuclear power, are akin to the steam engine's 18th-century skeptics.'' The farming of rain forests' natural products (nuts, medicines, rubber) could be substituted for clear-cutting; farming methods that prevent erosion, such as ``intercropping,'' could help feed a stable population (the authors argue that the earth, currently home to 5.4 billion people, cannot sustain more than 8 billion without catastrophic famine and disease). ``Sustainable progress'' rather than standard economic growth would take into account equity for women, the poor, other species, and future generations. Indicators should be adjusted, the authors say, so that for every economic gain that enhances GNP, such as the cutting and selling of trees, a debit--the destruction of that resource- -should be factored in. The refreshing thing about Worldwatch, in addition to its sane, can-do rather than alarmist attitude, is its balanced international scope, its drawing of statistics and examples from every continent. This volume, which launches a Worldwatch Environmental Alert Series, should be made part of the economic and political-science curriculum for undergraduates and graduate programs, including business schools. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Lester R. Brown is the founder of the Earth Policy and Worldwatch Institutes. He has been honored with numerous prizes, including a MacArthur Fellowship, the United Nations Environment Prize, and twenty-five honorary degrees. He lives in Washington, D.C.

Sandra Postel lives in Amherst, Massachusetts, where she directs the Global Water Policy Project. She is a Pew Fellow in Conservation and the Environment and a former vice president for research at the Worldwatch Institute. Her previous book, Last Oasis, now appears in eight languages and was the basis for a PBS television documentary. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Product Details

  • Series: Worldwatch Environmental Alert Series
  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: W W Norton & Co Inc; 1st edition (November 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0393030709
  • ISBN-13: 978-0393030709
  • Product Dimensions: 1.1 x 5.7 x 8.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,308,337 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

LESTER R. BROWN, founder and President of Earth Policy Institute, has been described by the Washington Post as "one of the world's most influential thinkers" and as "the guru of the global environmental movement" by The Telegraph of Calcutta. The author of numerous books, including World on the Edge: How to Prevent Environmental and Economic Collapse, chapters, articles, etc., he helped pioneer the concept of environmentally sustainable development. His principal research areas include food, population, water, climate change, and renewable energy. The recipient of scores of awards and honorary degrees, he is widely sought as a speaker. In 1974, he founded Worldwatch Institute, of which he was President for its first 26 years. As President, he launched the World Watch Papers, the Worldwatch/Norton books, the annual State of the World, World Watch magazine, the annual Vital Signs, and the Institute's News Briefs. For relaxation, Lester runs

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