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environment | sustainability

Report from Bob Doppelt

I was at a lecture tonight by Bob Doppelt. He had some amazing information on sustainability, timing and level of change. Here is my brief report.
Bob Doppelt is Executive Director of Resource Innovations, a sustainability research and technical assistance program, and of The Climate Leadership Initiative, both part of the Institute for a Sustainable Environment at the University of Oregon. He is an author and leading thinker on change, climate and sustainability.

Discussing climate change, Bob mentioned that we all need to prepare for this looming disaster. The first step is to reduce C02 emissions and reduce them quickly. CO2 in the atmosphere is already at 385 parts per million and we've got to get under 350ppm for climate stability according to the leading scientific consensus. We have 3-5 years to reduce emissions significantly. Ultimately, Americans need to reduce emissions by 95-97% to be sustainable with the planet and atmosphere.

We will need to cooperate and support each other on an unprecedented level. It is important to realize that people are at different places on their awareness and readiness for change. For example, 25 percent of the population is not even aware of any need for change. The other 75% range from "Might change someday" to "Already changed".

I'll repeat the fact that we have 3-5 years to make SIGNIFICANT changes. Business as usual is not good enough. Sustainability will not be achieved using the same type of thinking that created the mess. Bob has put forth the idea of "Sustainable Thinking" and that we all need to move towards this new way of thinking. He listed 10 differences between current thinking and sustainable thinking, for example: Short term thinking vs. LT thinking. Less bad is good enough vs. sustainable is good. Straight-line linear thinking vs Systems thinking. Cheap is good vs. pay full cost now. etc.

He said we need to all implement RPEG (re-peg)

Reduce CO2 now
Prepare for climate change
Educate everyone on the planet
G - I can't recall what the "g" stood for but I think this was about promoting the good. We must give 2 positives from these changes for each negative. For instance, reducing driving will clean the air, make it safer, quieter and cheaper to live.