In the News (from WBCSD): “Japan honors ‘Limits to Growth’ science author” Japan awarded its top science prize Thursday to a US researcher who decades ago predicted that rapid economic and population growth on a finite planet would lead to the collapse of civilization.
Professor Dennis Meadows led a research team that in the 1972 study “The Limits to Growth,” using a computer model called World3, forecast that on current trends humanity was headed for doom by 2100.
Meadows, of the US Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was the lead author of the study, which became a best-seller but was also attacked as alarmist and opposed to technology and progress. … Meadows, 65, received the 500,000-dollar annual Japan Prize from the country’s Science and Technology Foundation for “transformation towards a sustainable society in harmony with nature.” In his study, Meadows argued that “human demand exceeds nature’s supply.” Unless the human race switched from exponential population and economic growth to a sustainable system, his team argued, they would “overshoot” the Earth’s limits, leading to the collapse of human civilization.
More than three decades on – Meadows said that today he sees even fewer signs of hope. Meadows argued that the key lessons have not been learned, and that the search for solutions to the crisis remain based on “trust in the markets and the current faith in technological advances.” “Indeed, the most common policy for solving current economic problems is a desperate effort to get the growth of the physical economy back onto its historical, exponential track,” he said. “I know this policy will not work.”
My Comment: Almost 40 years has passed since he made his forecasts. And indeed, everything has changed for the worse! Everything he said has come true.
However, there is a solution: to reach equivalence with Nature by consuming only what is necessary for our existence. Then we will have enough of everything, no matter how many people there are in the world!
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