GST Original Articles

By Don Fitz / 24 August 2018
One of my first memories of watching TV during the early 1950s was ads promoting leaded gasoline for reducing engine knock. Little did I suspect the strange history of that gas. By the beginning of World War I, it became clear that the internal combustion automobile was edging out its rival steam cars and electric cars. Shortly afterwards, Thomas Midgley began researching how to remove the knocking “ping” sound from gasoline-powered cars. Midgley devoted no fewer than six years of his life... Read more
By Ellen Brown / 24 August 2018
Giant Chinese tech companies have bypassed credit cards and banks to create their own low-cost digital payment systems. The US credit card system siphons off excessive amounts of money from merchants, who must raise their prices to cover this charge. In a typical $100 credit card purchase, only $97.25 goes to the seller. The rest goes to banks and processors. But who can compete with Visa and MasterCard? It seems China’s new mobile payment ecosystems can. According to a May 2018 article in... Read more
By Don Fitz / 24 August 2018
Faith that environmental catastrophe can best be avoided by technological gadgetry rather than a change in social relationships received a big shot in the arm with the May 2018 publication of Energy: A Human History by prolific author Richard Rhodes. After completing 18 of his 20 chapters, Rhodes begins his exploration of nuclear power by comparing Rachel Carson, Ralph Nader, and Helen Caldicott to anti-humanists such as Thomas Malthus, Paul Ehrlich and followers of Adolf Hitler. This... Read more
By Stan Cox / 20 August 2018
The Guardian recently published an opinion piece by its economics editor in which he argued that capitalism can rescue civilization from the global climate emergency. Here is the full article, interrupted by my responses: Capitalism can crack climate change. But only if it takes risks by Larry Elliott This summer’s heatwave has provided a glimpse of the future, and it is not a pretty one. On current trends, the years to come will see rising temperatures... Read more

Pages

More Reading Recommended by GST

By Subhankar Banerjee / 03 January 2019
If you’ve been paying attention to what’s happening to the nonhuman life forms with which we share this planet, you’ve likely heard the term “the Sixth Extinction.” If not, look it up.  After all, a superb environmental reporter, Elizabeth Kolbert, has already gotten a Pulitzer Prize for writing a book with that title.
By Sarah Anderson / 29 December 2018
My mother’s father was a North Dakota postal employee, so on Christmas Eve, she never knew when he would get home. He was determined to keep working, my mom would tell us, “until every Christmas package that could be delivered would be delivered.” He started working for the Postal Service in 1911, and family lore has it that he sometimes had to trudge through the snow on horseback to deliver the... Read more
By Kris De Decker / 27 December 2018
The circular economy – the newest magical word in the sustainable development vocabulary – promises economic growth without destruction or waste. However, the concept only focuses on a small part of total resource use and does not take into account the laws of thermodynamics.
By Josh Farley / 20 December 2018
Perhaps the main reason people reject the need for a steady state economy is some form of cornucopianism, the belief that technological progress will overcome all ecological and physical limits, allowing endless economic growth into the indefinite future. Cornucopianism has several flavors, and I will describe three: mainstream economics, eco-modernism, and singularity theory.
By Helen Pattison / 19 December 2018
Climate change is clearly a pressing concern for the majority of working-class people. But with 71% of greenhouse gas emissions coming from 100 corporations, capitalism presents a fundamental barrier to solving the problem. After all, you can't control what you don't own. Under capitalism, production is unplanned, driven by the demands of profit. Only on the basis of public ownership of the... Read more
By Dayton Martindale / 19 December 2018
The term degrowth comes from French ecosocialist André Gorz, and until recently was mainly used by European academics. Indigenous movements in Latin America, however, have provided perhaps the best model of a degrowth movement, resisting mining and deforestation projects and building cooperative economies outside the capitalist market.
By Shankar Sharma / 16 December 2018
The importance of a holistic approach to the linkage between energy and water can be judged by an associated law in US: the ‘Nexus of Energy and Water for Sustainability (NEWS) Act of 2014’. It defines the term energy-water nexus as the link between energy efficiency and the quantity of water needed to produce fuels and energy, and the quantity of energy needed to transport, reclaim, and treat... Read more

Pages