Economic growth at the starting point of environmental problems

2020/06/25 Gallego Moya, Juanma - Kazetaria Iturria: Elhuyar aldizkaria

Ed. Micheile Henderson

Excessive consumption and wealth based on capitalism are the main factors that trigger environmental problems, according to a review article published by a group of researchers in the journal Nature Communications.

According to these scientists, climate, biodiversity and food have been some of the factors that have so far been taken into account in studies on environmental problems, but the influence of economies aimed at economic growth and the search for wealth has rarely been concretely analyzed.

Therefore, they have vindicated the need to question the paradigm of economic growth. They say that addressing environmental problems "cannot be based on mere technology" because technological improvements are not able to keep pace with consumption.

They believe that lifestyles based on excessive consumption and wealth must be changed. They warn that the problem goes beyond individual action, so they consider that "deeper structural changes" must be made in the productive system.

As an alternative, the proposals of different movements have been analyzed, based on the reform of capitalism, eco-socialism and eco-anarchism. From these ideologies, among others, they propose fiscal reform, basic income and maximum wages, the suppression of "liberal reforms", the creation of "citizens' assemblies" or the prohibition of certain products. In this direction groups such as the Extinction Rebellion or the Catalan Integral Cooperative have been put as an example.

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