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SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT

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YouTube. YouTube. What is Black Friday (BBC) Buy Nothing Day. Life in a 'degrowth' economy, and why you might actually enjoy it. What does genuine economic progress look like?

Life in a 'degrowth' economy, and why you might actually enjoy it

The orthodox answer is that a bigger economy is always better, but this idea is increasingly strained by the knowledge that, on a finite planet, the economy can’t grow for ever. This week’s Addicted to Growth conference in Sydney is exploring how to move beyond growth economics and towards a “steady-state” economy. But what is a steady-state economy? Why it is it desirable or necessary? And what would it be like to live in? The global predicament We used to live on a planet that was relatively empty of humans; today it is full to overflowing, with more people consuming more resources. At the same time, there are great multitudes around the world who are, by any humane standard, under-consuming, and the humanitarian challenge of eliminating global poverty is likely to increase the burden on ecosystems still further. Meanwhile the population is set to hit 11 billion this century.

Ethical shopping. Ethical shopping We all need to eat, drink and wear clothes, don’t we?

Ethical shopping

But what do we know about the products that we buy in shops, in supermarkets or online? Many people in Britain want to know more about the products they buy. They want to know how people, animals and our planet are treated when food, drinks and clothes are produced. Fairtrade The Fairtrade Foundation is an organisation based in the UK that helps farmers and workers in the poorer parts of the world to earn enough money to live comfortably. Free range and organic Free range farming means that farm animals spend time outside rather than being inside 24 hours a day. Ethical clothing Fashion is big global business. Pre-loved clothes Old clothes used to be called ‘second-hand’ or ‘hand-me-downs’. With the help of organisations like Fairtrade, shoppers in the UK can make more choices about some of the products they buy.

Video Report Fairtrade not benefiting the poor. World Food Day 2019 infographic 0. World Food Day 2019 infographic 0. What would a ‘climate diet’ look like in Australia? Millions of people around the world are hitting the streets this year in support of students who are demanding an end to fossil fuels.

What would a ‘climate diet’ look like in Australia?

But we can also strike with our forks: global food production contributes around a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions. Australia was recently flagged as one of the countries with the greatest potential to reduce diet-related greenhouse gas emissions. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) declared that it is crucial for all sectors to rally against global heating, and targets to slow it down simply can’t be achieved without addressing food production and land management. Environmental degradation also goes hand-in-hand with the global pandemic of chronic diseases including obesity, diabetes, cancer and heart disease. This double whammy includes other factors associated with industrial monocrops, such as pesticides and fertiliser.

So tweaking dietary habits is a win-win for people and the planet. Meat would feature less We’d eat less overall. Marcel Dicke: Why not eat insects? Make time for lunch. I’ve never liked to hurry through lunch.

Make time for lunch

Before I began working for myself, I always took lunch breaks, no matter what job I had. It never seemed right to me to wolf down lunch or any meal. I’ve never considered food to only be fuel. It is also one of life’s great pleasures. I was raised in a large New York Greek family that enjoyed getting together on weekends and holidays, the central focus a group meal. My father worked at the Bronx Terminal Market selling wholesale produce; returning home every afternoon with bags of fresh vegetables that my mother cooked to death, but at least they were fresh to begin with. When I started my first business in Sutton more than 40 years ago, it seemed natural to take a break at noon and go out for a bite to eat.

I’m convinced a leisurely lunch is good for our health. Businesses that give employees liberal lunch programs benefit from happier, more productive workers. For too many, meals have become a necessary inconvenience.