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Managing without Growth Dr. Peter A. Victor York University Canada Thursday June 10, 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "Managing without Growth Dr. Peter A. Victor York University Canada Thursday June 10, 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 Managing without Growth Dr. Peter A. Victor York University Canada Thursday June 10, 2010

2 Outline 1.The economy: a sub-system of the biosphere 2.Transgressing planetary boundaries 3.Technology: helpful but not sufficient 4.Scale matters 5. Extreme global inequalities: rich countries should go first 6. Managing without growth in Canada

3 FirmsHouseholds Economic Cycle

4 FirmsHouseholds Economic Cycle 1. The economy: a sub-system of the biosphere

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6 2. Excessive Burden on the Environment: Transgressing Planetary Boundaries

7 Billion tonnes Global Materials Extraction 1900 to % 700%

8 3. Technology: helpful but not sufficient

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14 ‘I would say this is most environmentally friendly cruise ship to date. It is much more efficient than other similar ships.’ (Project engineer)

15 Material intensity is declining, but not fast enough 47% 110% 29% Key message: Environmental impact depends on intensity and scale GDP Resource Extraction Material Intensity 4. Must address scale as well as intensity

16 Energy consumption - same story 59% Key message: Environmental impact depends on intensity and scale 110% 24% GDP Primary Energy Energy Intensity

17 5. Extreme global inequalities: rich countries should go first

18 LowGrow Canada Can we have full employment, no poverty, fiscal balance, reduced GHG emissions without relying on economic growth? 5. Managing without growth

19 LowGrow Canada You bet!

20 What makes an economy grow? Macro demand (what we spend money on): –Consumption –Investment –Government –Trade Macro supply (what we can produce): –Labour –Capital –Productivity

21 ‘Business as usual’ GDP per Capita GHG Emissions Poverty Unemployment Debt to GDP Ratio

22 What happens if we eliminate increases in all sources of economic growth? (starting in 2010 over 10 years) Consumption Investment Government Trade Population/labour Productivity

23 A no growth disaster GDP per Capita GHG Emissions Poverty Unemployment Debt to GDP Ratio

24 ‘The real issue is whether it is possible to challenge the “growth-at-any-cost model” and come up with an alternative that is environmentally benign, economically robust and politically feasible.’ Larry Elliot (economics editor) The Guardian Weekly 29th August 2008

25 A better low/no growth scenario How? New meanings and measures of success Limits on materials, energy, wastes and land use Stable population and labour force More efficient capital stock Carbon price Shorter work year Fewer status goods More generous anti-poverty programs Education for life not just work GDP per Capita GHG Emissions Unemployment PovertyDebt to GDP Ratio

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