Friday, 7 December 2007

Power - the new money

The flight pledge I took a year ago was, in retrospect, one of the best decisions I have ever made. Instead, I’ve taken up time travel, which is free and doesn’t require fossil fuels. These days, the future is my preferred destination, around the middle of this century. Sometimes I get off at the wrong stop, which is the hell of our own making, where the two-degree tipping point has been passed. This is the destination our compass is currently pointing to; I don’t like to visit that place very often. I prefer to spend time in the future where humanity has redefined what we mean by progress. George Monbiot’s fabulous think piece this week set the scene to THE conversation of the coming year - how will we move away from economic growth society to a life sustaining society? We need urgently to all start talking about this and imagining it, and making different choices, living it.

In my travels, in 2050, I see communities generating all their power locally, through community-owned Energy Services Companies. Money will be replaced with tradeable energy units, also owned locally. Money as power, power as power. We’ll grow food and make things again, including our own entertainment. We’ll have moved completely away from fossil fuels and learned to live within our planetary means. Weaning ourselves off our fossil fuel addiction is going to be fantastic news for our wellbeing as humans and for all beings on the planet. The future looks bright, if we get it right.

1 comment:

James said...

Community generated power would add to economic growth. Payments for energy would be circulated round and round local economies instead of disappearing off to super-rich folk overseas. Local power (and even local energy efficiency) adds to local, national and global economic activity.

Economic growth has never been important to the public. Very few people, despite modern status insecurities and pervasive advertising, aspire to ever more possessions in preference to other values. Whatever choices the public make, growth will remain important only to politicians. In fact the more we focus on our own lifestyles and local issues the more that politicians are free to waste the public's money on quick-fix mega-projects. We'll be too busy digging our potatoes to stop them.