Understanding Sustainability

Sustainability References

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Tirado, Reyes and Paul Johnston. 2010. "Food Security: GM Crops Threaten Biodiversity." Science 328(5975):170-171.

Tokar, Brian. 1997. "Questioning Official Environmentalism." Z Magazine 1 April.

  • "…Earth Day was going to be a politically safe event, with almost no attention toward the institutions or the economic system responsible for ecocide, nothing about confronting corporate polluters, nothing about changing the structures of society. The overriding message was simply, 'change your lifestyle': recycle, drive less, stop wasting energy, buy better appliances, etc. Celebrations in several major U.S. cities were supported by some of the most notorious corporate polluters—companies like Monsanto, Peabody Coal, and Georgia Power, to name a few. Everyone from the nuclear power industry to the Chemical Manufacturers’ Association took out full-page advertisements in newspapers and magazines proclaiming that, for them, 'Every day is Earth Day.' The now-familiar greenwashing of Earth Day had clearly begun."
  • "The Multinational Monitor found that 23 directors and council members from Audubon, NRDC, the Wilderness Society, the World Resources Institute, and World Wildlife Fund were associated with 19 corporations cited in a recent survey of the 500 worst industrial polluters. These companies included such recognized environmental offenders as Union Carbide, Exxon, Monsanto, Weyerhaeuser, DuPont, and Waste Management, Inc. Furthermore, some 67 individuals associated with just 7 environmental groups served as CEOs, chairpersons, presidents, consultants or directors for 92 major corporations."
  • "To challenge the hegemony of the voices of official environmentalism on the national level will ultimately require more active and diverse networks of grassroots activists, organized and coordinated from the ground up. Such networks have begun to appear in the environmental justice movement, as well as among grassroots forest activists. Activists working on similar issues and facing an increasingly unified corporate agenda need to find ways to join forces across boundaries of geography, ethnicity, class, and specific-issue focus." 
  • "The official Earth Day 1995 petition, addressed with a puzzling forthrightness to House Speaker Newt Gingrich, began, “With major polluters such as Texaco and Monsanto attempting to ‘sponsor’ Earth Day, and every politician in the nation claiming to be ‘for the environment,’ it is getting hard to figure out who is really protecting the planet and who is poisoning it.” The corporate co-optation of Earth Day, an idea that provoked intense controversy in 1990, and brought hundreds of people to demonstrate on Wall Street, had become conventional wisdom by mid-decade. Will activists in 1997 begin to chart a different path?"

Tokar, Brian. 2014. "The Myths of Green Capitalism." New Politics 14(4):56.

  • "By 1990, as environmentalists were gathering to celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the first Earth Day, a new kind of environmental politics was emerging from America's boardrooms, an overtly corporate environmentalism that extolled the virtues of the capitalist 'free market' and suggested that adjustments in personal lifestyles through 'green' consumerism were a better way to curtail pollution and further environmental goals while simultaneously increasing profits."

  • "To this day, market enthusiasts extol the EPA’s acid rain program as a successful example of how emissions trading can help lower the costs of environmental compliance. But in practice, it demonstrated some predictable features of an essentially artificial new commodity market, including overwhelming dominance by major players and distorting trade-offs between market behavior and regulatory compliance. In the end it confirmed that regulation remains a far more efficient means of achieving environmental goals."

  • "…carbon offsets allow corporations to postpone investments in necessary emissions reductions at home, and ultimately represent a gaping hole in any mandated 'cap' in carbon dioxide emissions. They are a means for polluting industries to continue business as usual while contributing, marginally at best, to overall emissions reductions."
  • Many argue "...that socially responsible investing and 'triple bottom lines' (monetary, social, and environmental) can sufficiently transform the business world. Environmental economists have come up with far more sophisticated measures of social and environmental costs and benefits, seeking to substitute more nuanced measures of 'genuine progress' for conventional GDP calculations. All these approaches, however, serve to obscure the inherently anti-ecological character of capitalism. A system that concentrates political and economic power in the hands of those who pursue the accumulation of capital without restraint is going to continue to demand expansion and growth, however skilled we may become at measuring our ecological footprint. The imperative to grow and accumulate in turn redoubles the economy’s impacts on the earth’s threatened ecosystems. While environmentalists continue to work toward feasible near-term solutions to pollution, biodiversity loss, and the destabilization of the climate, it is also essential to look forward toward a genuinely ecological and democratic alternative both in economics and politics."

Tolabc, Richard S.J., Maria Bohnd, Thomas E. Downinge, Marie-Laure Guillermineta, Eva Hizsnyikf, Roger Kaspersond, Kate Lonsdalee, Claire Maysg, Robert J. Nichollsh, Alexander A. Olsthoornb, Gabriele Pfeifleg, Marc Poumadereg, Ferenc L. Tothfi, Athanasios T. Vafeidisjk, Peter E. van der Werffb, and I. Hakan Yetkiner. 2006. "Adaptation to Five Metres of Sea Level Rise." Journal of Risk Research 9(5):467-482.

Tolbert, V.R. (ed.). 1998. "Environmental Effects of Biomass from Crop Production. What Do We Know? What Do We Need to Know?" Biomass and Bioenergy (Special Issue) 14(4).

Tolbert,V.R., F.C. Thornton, J.D. Joslin, B.R. Bock, W. Bandaranayake, A.E. Huston, D.D. Tyler, D.A. Mays, T.H. Green, and I. Petry. 2000. "Increasing Below-ground Carbon Sequestration with Conversion of Agricultural Lands to Production of Bioenergy Crops." New Zealand Journal of Forestry Science 30(1/2):138-149.

Tollefson, Jeff. 2013. "Methane leaks erode green credentials of natural gas losses of up to 9% show need for broader data on US gas industry’s environmental impact." Nature 2 January.

Tollefson, Jeff. 2015. "Stopping deforestation: Battle for the Amazon. Brazil has waged a successful war on tropical deforestation, and other countries are trying to follow its lead." But victory remains fragile." Nature 1 April.

Toman, Michael A. 1992. "The Difficulty in Defining Sustainability." Resources 106(Winter):3-6. [summary]  [PDF]

Tomkiewicz, Micha. 2010. "On the Feasibility of a Timely Transition to a More Sustainable Energy Future." Sustainability 2:204-214. 

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