Archive for the category “Transition”

Sustainable Lifestyles: Pathways and Choices for India and Germany

Harry Lehmann, Sudhir Chella Rajan
Co-authors: Sneha Annavarapu, Claudia Kabel, Christian Löwe, Astrid Matthey
(Indo-German Expert Group on Green and Inclusive Economy)

policy paper
Green Economy has been recognized by the Rio+20 Summit as “one of the important tools available for achieving sustainable development”. It is emphasized that Green Economy should “contribute to eradicating poverty as well as sustained economic growth, enhancing social inclusion, improving human welfare and creating opportunities for employment and decent work for all, while maintaining the healthy functioning of the Earth’s ecosystems”.

Such a transition towards a green and inclusive economy requires major efforts both on a national and international level, and cooperation and exchange of experiences is key to support the process. India and Germany are major players in this transition. Against this backdrop, an interdisciplinary working group of renowned experts from leading research institutions and political think tanks in India and Germany has been set up in November 2013 to enhance
collaborative learning, contribute to informed decision making in both countries and feed into the international debate on a Green and Inclusive Economy.

Five key topics are:
• Frameworks and challenges for a green and inclusive transformation
• Natural resources and decoupling growth from resource consumption
• Sustainable lifestyles
• Green and inclusive cities
• Transformation of the private sector

This policy paper was elaborated based on discussions in the context of the 3rd expert
group meeting on 12–14 November 2014 in Berlin.
The group is supported by the German Ministry for the Environment, Nature Conservation,
Building and Nuclear Safety (BMUB) and facilitated by the GIZ Environmental Policy
Programme in Berlin and the Indo-German Environment Partnership in Delhi.

Visit the website of the Indo-German Centre for Sustainability
Download the paper: Sustainable Lifestyles: Pathways and Choices for India and Germany

Event: Badanavalu Satyagraha & National Convention for Sustainable Living

scene from the play Yantra Rakshasa Mardini (Slaying of the Machine ...
Scene from Yantra Rakshasa Mardini (Slaying of the Machine), a play recently held in Bangalore in support of  Badanavalu Satyagraha. Pic courtesy: The New Indian Express

Over the last year and a half, a Handloom Satyagraha has been underway in and around the state of Karnataka. It was conducted by the All India Federation of Handloom Organizations. In December 2013, thousands of handloom weavers from across Karnataka marched several hundred kilometers in a campaign entitled ‘Banashankari Yatre’. In January 2014, an indefinite fast was observed demanding strict implementation of the Handloom Reservation Act. In December 2014, a fast until death campaign was undertaken in order to protest against the manufacture of imitation handloom products through powerlooms.

The federation has now decided to broad base the Satyagraha and include all organizations working towards sustainability into this campaign. Sustainability in agriculture, environment, labour, gender, language, folklore, culture and education, along with Khadhi and handlooms, is our motto. Badanavalu Satyagraha has now become a joint campaign of all consumers and producers of a sustainable production range. It is a joint campaign of the city people and the village poor. Read more…

Event: Badanavalu Satyagraha & National Convention for Sustainable Living

scene from the play Yantra Rakshasa Mardini (Slaying of the Machine ...
Scene from Yantra Rakshasa Mardini (Slaying of the Machine), a play recently held in Bangalore in support of  Badanavalu Satyagraha. Pic courtesy: The New Indian Express

Over the last year and a half, a Handloom Satyagraha has been underway in and around the state of Karnataka. It was conducted by the All India Federation of Handloom Organizations. In December 2013, thousands of handloom weavers from across Karnataka marched several hundred kilometers in a campaign entitled ‘Banashankari Yatre’. In January 2014, an indefinite fast was observed demanding strict implementation of the Handloom Reservation Act. In December 2014, a fast until death campaign was undertaken in order to protest against the manufacture of imitation handloom products through powerlooms.

The federation has now decided to broad base the Satyagraha and include all organizations working towards sustainability into this campaign. Sustainability in agriculture, environment, labour, gender, language, folklore, culture and education, along with Khadhi and handlooms, is our motto. Badanavalu Satyagraha has now become a joint campaign of all consumers and producers of a sustainable production range. It is a joint campaign of the city people and the village poor. Read more…

Report: A New Alignment of Movements?

New Report Explores The Commons as a Paradigm to Align Movements

David Bollier, Shareable.net

The proliferation of activist initiatives calling for systemic change around the world has never been more impressive. Yet collaborations among like-minded organizations, projects and movements have been disappointingly modest. As neoliberal economics and policies tighten their grip on American society—notwithstanding the dismal misbehavior of financial institutions, corporations and the two political parties—can leading alt-economic and social movements find ways to work more closely together?

In an attempt to explore this challenge, two dozen internationally minded activists from leading economic and social movements met in September 2014. While Margaret Thatcher had once insisted “There Is No Alternative” to her neoliberal agenda—inspiring the acronym TINA—the takeaway from this conclave of activists was quite the opposite: “There Are Plenty of Alternatives,” or TAPAS.

The three days of discussion detailed the many exciting initiatives that progressive activists are pursuing: innovative forms of co-operatives, community-based finance systems, alternative currencies that benefit participating members, and commons-based models like community land trusts, participatory budgeting and municipal/commons partnerships. There are timebanks, local food systems, hackerspaces and FabLabs, software platforms for democratic deliberation, and open design and manufacturing communities for cars, furniture and farm equipment.

A report summarizing the key points of discussion was recently released by the Commons Strategies Group(CSG), the organization which had convened the twenty-five activists in Meissen, Germany. The report, A New Alignment of Movements? [pdf] was written by myself, as CSG cofounder, and Pat Conaty, a Fellow of the New Economics Foundation and Research Associate at Co-operatives UK. Support for the workshop came from the Heinrich Böll Foundation (Germany) and the Charles Léopold Mayer Foundation (France and Switzerland).

Continue reading         Download report

Workshop: Conservation, Environmental Protection and Equity (Vizag, 28-29 March)

Andhra University, Visakhapatnam, 28-29 March 2018

A one and a half day workshop titled Ecological Resources Conservation, Environmental Protection and Equity Movements will be held on 2829 March as part of the XXXVIII Indian Social Science Congress to be held in Andhra University, Visakhapatnam between 29 March and 2 April 2018. The focal theme of the congress is Knowledge systems, scientific temper and the Indian people.

Objectives
The object of this workshop is to explore the possibility of finding common ground for the three types of people’s movements to dialogue and work together and to understand the practical linkages between local issues on which movements take place and their global causes.

Participants
The workshop is largely for activists from Andhra Pradesh and Telangana and will be conducted in Telugu. The activists should have participated in struggles against inequality or destructive development projects, or participated in conservation movements. Interested activists from other states may attend. The organizers will assist them to have whisper translation done. Read more…

Bangalore meeting with Naresh of Transition Town Totnes

totnesTransition Towns is a world wide living experiment in how to shift our current system of unequal, growth based consumption, to one where all are living well in times of change and within our planetary boundaries. The transition movement now has many examples of how local, small scale change can influence social and political systems.

Naresh Giangrande, co founder of the first Transition Town Totnes in the UK is touring India over February and March 2018. Naresh is happy to share the learning the Transition Movement has developed. He is also excited by how India is tackling problems of sustainability and how that learning can be used in other countries and in other contexts.

Date: 26th February, 2018
Venue: Ashirwad, St. Mark’s Road, Bangalore
Time: 6 pm – 9 pm
Contact person: Stanley Ravi (Mob: 9886705452, Email: urgentley@gmail.com)

– for talks, donations would be welcome but are not essential.
– for trainings some sort of exchange is welcome.

Transition Network Logo - Home
For more information, visit the Transition Network website, or visit their Facebook page or YouTube channel.

The Sharing Cities Toolkit

Shareable.net

Responding to the calls from organizers in the SCN who articulated the need for a cohesive repository of the tools and resources necessary to support their cities on the path to becoming a Sharing City. To meet this need we are creating the Sharing Cities Toolkit; an evolving compilation of resources comprised of a mix of How-to’s, Project Guides, example Policy and tried and true Models and Advice. While a lot of these resources have been either created or published by Shareable over the last five years we are curating the best content we can find and have pulled resources created by many other organizations.

Table of Contents:

Sharing City Organizing
Community Action Guides
Legal Advocacy Resources
Project Specific Resources
Fundraising Resources
Sharing Economy Presentations
Tools For Organizing
General Nonprofit Resources
Contribute to this Toolkit

Access the Sharing Cities Toolkit

T. Vijayendra: Post Carbon Society And Transition

The Industrial Society or the Carbon Society
The present social system that we are living is called Industrial Society. It began with the Industrial Revolution (1760 -1830) in the West and was followed by social revolution in various countries – Holland, France, England and the USA, ending the age old feudal society and ushering in a capitalist society. Later, similar revolutions followed in many countries in the West and in Japan in the East. In the twentieth century, many socialist revolutions occurred, notably in Russia, China, Cuba and Vietnam. All of them had two things common – ushering in an industrial society (whether capitalist or socialist) and ending the feudal society.

However, capitalism spread in other countries too – mainly through colonialism, but without effecting a similar social revolution. These countries are generally known as Third World countries, which includes India too. In the absence of a social revolution, it did not unleash the people’s energy as they continued to suffer from poverty and lack of education and good health care. On the other hand, many traditional low energy technologies and ways of living are still active in these societies.

The material basis of industrial society has been coal, oil and many other minerals. These are generally known as non-renewable resources because, unlike plant and animal resources, these are fixed in quantity under the earth and as we take them out, their stock keeps on dwindling. Among these, coal and oil are the most important because they represent concentrated sources of energy. Hence industrial societies can also be called carbon-based societies. Read more…

Upcoming events in Hyderabad

DISCUSSION – JAN 17
“The shape of post carbon society and the hazy road to get there”
Time and date: 6.30 pm, Sat, 17 Jan 2018
Place: Cerana Foundation office, D-101 Highrise Apartments, Lower Tank Bund Road (next to Courtyard Marriott Hotel), Hyderabad. Tel: 2753 6128.
Message from the organiser (Sagar Dhara): Some of our friends were in Lima during the 20th COP meet on climate negotiations that happened last month, a topic we discussed in our last meeting. If these friends are available, we can have a short report on what happened in Lima before we start discussing the above topic.
Please let me know if you are in. And you are welcome to bring along others who may be interested in this subject or forward this info to them. You could also stay back to discuss the more contentious issues over a dinner (makki ki roti and sarson da saag for anyone?) at the nearby dhaba.
For more information on the topic, contact Sagar Dhara at: sagdhara@gmail.com
SEMINAR – JAN 23-24
Seminar on water conservation at Pious College, near Habsiguda Junction. Those interested in the subject may contact Ms Prabhalata at biobotstpious@gmail.com and request her for an invitation for the 2 day seminar (23-24 Jan) on Water conservation.  There will be a talk by Sagar Dhara at 12 noon on 23rd Jan titled: “To conserve water bodies, all three global commons – water, land and atmosphere – need to be conserved“.
CONFERENCE
A conference on Climate Change will be held at HCU in the first week of February. Email Sagar Dhara at sagdhara@gmail.com for details.

News update

Bad loans will worsen if economy falters: RBI
Indian Express
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has warned that the asset quality of scheduled commercial banks may worsen from the current level if the macroeconomic conditions deteriorate drastically. The central bank’s latest Financial Stability Report has also raised red flag on connected banks triggering a contagion and sought more disclosures and accountability in big-ticket corporate debt restructuring (CDR).

Oil’s Swift Fall Raises Fortunes of U.S. Abroad
Andrew Higgins, New York Times
A plunge in oil prices has sent tremors through the global political and economic order, setting off an abrupt shift in fortunes that has bolstered the interests of the United States and pushed several big oil-exporting nations — particularly those hostile to the West, like Russia, Iran and Venezuela — to the brink of financial crisis.

Five energy surprises for 2018
Kurt Cobb, Resource Insights
The coming year is likely to be as full of surprises in the field of energy as 2014 was. We just don’t know which surprises! I am not predicting that any of the following will happen, and they will be surprises to most people if they do. But, I think there is an outside chance that one or more will occur, and this would move markets and policy debates in unexpected directions.=

We’ve Been Incorrectly Predicting Peak Oil For Over a Century
Matt Novak, Paleofuture
The authors lists a number of failed predictions about oil depletion and argues that “the idea of peak oil has contributed to climate change more than any other meme of the 20th century. Rather than making the case for alternative energy sources, too many people believed that it would be a problem that eventually sorted itself, which it won’t.” Also read the lively debate triggered by the article, in the comments section.

A Roadmap to Global Burning: Notes for Understanding the Lima Outcome
Pablo Solón, Common Dreams
The “Lima call for climate action” which came out of the recent UN climate talks, establishes a roadmap to a post-2020 agreement that will be weaker than the ongoing Cancun Agreement (for 2012-2020), and it lays a foundation for an even worse agreement in Paris in 2018, says Solon, former Bolivian ambassador to the United Nations.

What climate change asks of us
Margaret Klein, The Climate Psychologist
Climate change is a crisis, and crises alter morality. Climate change is on track to cause the extinction of half the species on earth and, through a combination of droughts, famines, displaced people, and failed states and pandemics, the collapse of civilization within this century. This is an unprecedented moral responsibility, and we are by and large failing to meet it.

Review: The Great Transition – The New Paradigm
Nafeez Ahmed, Degrowth 2014 blog
Worried about the shit hitting the fan on climate change and other major crises? Good. Because those crises prove that civilization is in the midst of a phase shift to new forms – and we’ve got the opportunity, right now, to ride the wave of five interlinked revolutions in information, food, energy, finance and ethics, to co-create a new way of being that works for everyone. (This is a review of University of Turin economist Prof Mauro Bonaiuti’s new book, The Great Transition. Read Part 1 of the review: The End of Growth?)

Leading archaeologist says world civilization approaching collapse
PBS Hews Hour
Arthur Demarest, one of the world’s leading archaeologists, studies the collapse of ancient civilizations, from Greece and Rome to the Maya and Aztecs. In this interview with Ted Fischer, a professor of anthropology at Vanderbilt University, he says “I see most of the symptoms of societies on the brink of collapse, not just in the U.S., but in the tightly interconnected societies of Western civilization – now essentially world civilization,” and gives detailed reasons why.

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