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Oregon Rural Action’s Annual Meeting: Making the Shift Building a Vibrant Local Economy Amidst the Broken Global Financial System La Grande, Oregon October.

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Presentation on theme: "Oregon Rural Action’s Annual Meeting: Making the Shift Building a Vibrant Local Economy Amidst the Broken Global Financial System La Grande, Oregon October."— Presentation transcript:

1 Oregon Rural Action’s Annual Meeting: Making the Shift Building a Vibrant Local Economy Amidst the Broken Global Financial System La Grande, Oregon October 9, 2010

2 My Story From Wall Street to Grasslands and the Capital Institute “I once said greed was good… now it seems that greed is legal.” - Gordon Gekko

3 Bridging the gap between mainstream finance and the new economy movement.

4 the dilemma of compound growth UNSUSTAINABLE

5 Economics ignores laws of thermodynamics Anyone who thinks you can grow the economy forever on a finite planet is either a madman or an economist! - Kenneth Boulding

6 Symptom: financial crisis Problem: unsustainable economic system Sustained economic growth: oxymoron? The world is full…but nothing is changing. Planetary Boundaries

7 FACT If everyone were to live like Americans we would need 5 Earths

8 So what?

9 Financial Crisis crisis

10 Population Crisis World 6,826,859,514 CaOwK2yTk/S1600-R/worldpop_2009_lowerfertility.gif

11 Climate Crisis Hurricane Katrina, 2005

12 Water Crisis

13 Peak Soil In past 40 years, 30% of farmland has become unproductive

14 Peak Oil

15 Energy Crisis 48c5-b9a5-7d322cf1fccc/Image/caa79888d3200de8c9ed8dbfb0bfd8c4.jpg “Nothing has changed….oil and natural gas are essential to our way of life.” - Jack Gerard, American Petroleum Institute “Nothing has changed….oil and natural gas are essential to our way of life.” - Jack Gerard, American Petroleum Institute

16 So if we know the problems, why aren’t we changing?

17 Economic Efficiency Economy Finance Planet What’s wrong with this picture?

18 Sustainability Optimum Efficiency 100% 0% Resiliency Collapse of Financial System Source: Bernard Lietaer, 2008 Biosphere Economy Finance Sustainability in Complex Systems

19 In the wake of one of the World’s greatest economic crises, “sustainability” is unable to compete with mainstream perceptions of financial reform Public Opinion on Priority: Sustainability vs. Economic Growth sustainability economic growth Opinion on Priority GALLUP POLL environment-and-sustainability-how-conventional-wisdom- gets-way

20 Look where the money’s going: Climate Protecting Climate Damaging

21 Finance is the fuel source… what we feed GROWS

22 Reform Transform

23 Harnessing Capital. A world in which finance serves a just, resilient and sustainable economic system.

24 Driving capital upstream wPZzo/s1600/upstream.jpg

25 Building a Vibrant Local Economy taking action

26 ”... production from local resources for local needs is the most rational way of economic life...” - E. F. Schumacher, Small Is Beautiful

27 Place based diverse economies: building resiliency Tribal? Portland Detroit Sustainability Optimum Efficiency 100% 0% Resiliency

28 “Economies of location often override and outdo economies of scale.” - Jane Jacobs, The Nature of Economies

29 Farmer’s Diner “increasing the economic vitality of local agrarian communities” Decreasing distance from farm to plate, increasing profit for local farmers

30 Grasslands, LLC: Holistic Management Restore ecological function, revitalize rural communities. Profitably.

31 “When you improve the quality of the land in an ecological sense, the profitability follows.” How to Save the Grasslands: Bring in More Cattle By JUDITH D. SCHWARTZ Tuesday, Sep. 07, 2010 Grasslands, LLC

32 Local CAN scale Founded in 1956 Philosophy: Co-operation | Participation | Social Responsibility | Innovation 4 Sectors: Finance, Industry, Distribution and Knowledge 85,000 people, 256 companies, 15 Billion Euros in turnover Basque Country, Spain

33 Local CAN scale “Import replacement” activity (Jane Jacobs) Employee-owned, for-profit companies: greenhouse produce, laundry service, solar energy Based locally, hire locally: permanent green jobs Workers earn a living wage, build equity as owners Circulate money within community - 5:1 multiplier Cleveland, OH

34 Local Community Capital

35 Complementary Currencies: building resiliency Thousands of examples, over 600 in Japan alone Numerous countries Highly diverse ecosystem Multiple “schools” of thought Sustain Optimum Efficiency 0% Resilien cy

36 Complementary Currencies: proven models WIR Bank Founded in 1934, Switzerland Response to stock market crash in 1929 The word for “we” in German > economic circle is also a community Has grown from 16 to 62,000 members Swiss Franc 1.6 Billion annual turnover

37 Complementary Currencies: time banks Building the Core Economy Time really is money Strengthening communities through reciprocity “We are all assets”

38 Complementary Currencies: emerging models BerkShares A local currency for Southern Berkshire region of Massachusetts (pop. 19,000) Defines a trading area, an economic footprint Distinguishes the local businesses Builds loyalty Encourages community self-reliance and wellbeing of community

39 “A good community, as we know, insures itself by trust, by good faith and good will, and by mutual help. A good community, in other words, is a good local economy.” -Wendell Berry

40 What is the purpose of capital?


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