Arnold Kling  

Ron Bailey on Sustainability

Castro's Resignation: The Mark... More on the Trouble with Minar...

He sums up a lot of information including.

the amount of land needed to grow enough food to feed a person has plummeted from about one-and-a-quarter acres in 1950 to about half an acre today. Jesse Ausubel, director of the Program for the Human Environment at Rockefeller University, finds, "If the world farmer reaches the average yield of today's US corn grower during the next 70 years, ten billion people eating as people now on average do will need only half of today's cropland. The land spared exceeds Amazonia. This will happen if farmers sustain the yearly 2 percent worldwide yield growth of grains achieved since 1960, in other words if social learning continues as usual."

And what about water? Americans are using less water per capita too. Water withdrawals peaked in 1980 and have been flat since.

But note this:

Just what are all those "unnecessary things" that allegedly clog our shopping malls? Which does Revkin think we should want to give up? He mentions not a single product—yet ... 246 varieties of dog food and 165 kinds of cat food, and even Valentine gifts for your favorite mutt?

The brown dog meme has legs.

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COMMENTS (2 to date)
kebo writes:

It apparently has a long tail, too!

Har! Har!

Adam writes:

From what I have read this seems a lot to do with trade-offs. Recently I attended a seminar with Dr. Dwight Lee at Mesa Community College. He was very knowledgeable and quite funny. The main thing I picked up was that tradeoffs are everywhere. That you always have to give up something saying to attain something else. Such as giving someone money to receive food. During his speech he mentions Milton Friedman quite a bit throughout his speech. Before I attended the seminar I never heard of the name. I was wondering what you thought about such tradeoffs and the beliefs that Milton Friedman carried out. Does Milton Friedman's work affect any of your thinking to this day?

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