Ecofeminism sees parallels between the exploitation of nature and the exploitation of women, parallels that are understood in the context of patriarchy. One particularly vigorous ecofeminist analysis stems from the work of Claudia von Werlhof and Maria Mies.
If you are looking for practical tips and gentle inspiration on living a ‘green’ lifestyle then you might like to head on over and have a look at Heather’s blog ‘Whole Living on a Budget‘.
Reducing Waste in Our Home is a good place to start on our challenge to say Enough Already! (1) & (2) and to make a 90% cut in our carbon emissions 🙂
I set myself the task, at the end of Enough Already! Part One, to give a ‘picture’ of what a sustainable lifestyle might look and feel like. I’m sure a good answer must be out there somewhere amidst the thousands and thousands of ‘green’ web-pages, but my searches failed to find it, or to find data that I felt I could use in a reasonably straightforward way.
I will keep an eye out, but in the meantime, here’s my rough and ready answer.
A sustainable lifestyle (compared to those of current rich nation lifestyles):
1. Probably wouldn’t have an income above U.S. $10-12,000 at today’s prices (I’m allowing for the depreciation of the U.S. $ in last couple of years).
2. Will not include flying, for most people.
3. Will not include private motor vehicle travel, for most people, most of the time.
4. Will have a diet that includes much less meat, probably less total calories, and that is based much more on locally grown organic food.
5. Will feature more emphasis on relationships and community, and less on consumption.
6. Will be big on the three Rs, especially the first (Reduce, reuse, recycle).
For all its flaws, particularly in the sphere of political freedoms, Cuba’s post-Soviet collapse experience is an encouraging example of some of the ways a society can adapt to needing to use much less oil. That story, and much more good stuff about adapting to Peak-Oil (just one of the sustainability challenges) can be found at The Community Solution. George Monbiot’s Heat, reviewed by David recently, is also a positive, constructive examination of ways to move to a more sutainable lifestyle (Monbiot is looking at what it means for the U.K.).
George Monbiot’s book Heat (reviewed here) includes a brief discussion on the difference between efficiency and reduction. Given that eco-efficiency is one of the buzzwords of sustainability, I want to highlight his discussion, as it seems to me to be very important for greens to be aware of the problem he outlines.
Monbiot notes that if a new consumer gadget or a new industrial production process or a refitted home uses 30% less energy than previously, then we might assume that 30% of the previous energy consumption has been saved. Unfortunately, due to some very inconvenient side-effects of eco-efficiency, this is not necessarily the case.