|Beyond green economy
A Conference at Copenhagen Business
School, May 2013
The conference had four main speakers
and five workshops. There were 450 participants, which was far beyond our
expectations. The main conclusions can be summarized as follows:
- We have a debt-based money system.
New debt is constantly required to pay the interests on the old debt. The
amount of debt in the World is always bigger than the total amount of money in
- This spiral of debt requires
perpetual economic growth to keep going. The economy will collapse when growth
- Economic growth is obtained by a
growth in material consumption, a growth in services, and conversion of things
that used to be free into paid products and services.
- Economic growth is not equal to
growth in welfare and happiness.
- Material growth is limited by
natural ressources and the capacity of the Earth to absorb pollution. We are
approaching this limit.
- The growth in services is limited
by the amount of human relations that can be converted into paid services. We
are approaching the limit of this, too.
- Green growth is not a real possibility, but an excuse for continuing the
catastrophic course of growth.
- The money system, the financial
system, and the insatiable demand for growth is alienating humans from each
other and from nature. It is forcing us to compete against each other rather
- Before money was invented, we had
a gift economy, not barter. We need to re-create a society where humans are
encouraged to give and to share.
- We need to fundamentally change
the money system and the financial system.
- We need a new defining narrative
or mythology of our society that is not based on growth and competition.
- We need a new way of thinking that
is more in harmony with our inner feelings, our spirituality and with nature.
- There are many things we can do on
a personal level and together to establish alternatives.
See the menu above for more details.
The conference was organized by
Occupy Denmark and
in cooperation with Copenhagen
Business School. Exhibitions were set up by
Crisis Mirror and
The conference was free in order to
celebrate the principle of gift economy. Free vegetarian food was generously
provided by Restaurant Govinda
on plates made by organic material.
We are very grateful to the many
volunteers who made this groundbreaking event happen.
We also want to thank the sponsors:
friendly plast products,