Consumerism – The Pilfering Privileged

I was talking with my hubby about this class he is in at school and it was interesting what was shared with his class. It actually made me concerned about whether any progress is being made to become more concerned about our environment, and the over usage of our resources. How long can this earth keep going the way it is? How long can we consume as much as we are consuming?

The US consumes far more energy than any other country at 19,650,000 bbl/day with the closest country being Japan at 5,290,000. Consumerism in general is a huge problem in the US. Why do we feel we always need the biggest and the best? Why do we always spend way more than we have?

Many of us have grown up learning and being told that 6 billion is too much and this “over population” is primarily impacting the planet’s ability to cope. But is that really the case? Sure, the planet is facing incredible stress. But how much of that is due to large populations, and how much is based on other factors, such as how we choose to live, how we produce, consume and waste our resources? The poor are numerous, but as we shall see, consume far less resources of the planet, for example. From Global Issues, Human Population.

People are hungry not because the population is growing so fast that food is becoming scarce, but because people cannot afford it. It is international trade and economic policies that have lead to immense poverty and hunger, not food scarcity due to over population.

“Globally, the 20% of the world’s people in the highest-income countries account for 86% of total private consumption expenditures – the poorest 20% a minuscule 1.3%”, according to the United Nations Development Program’s 1998 Human Development Report.

What can we do? How can we feed the hungry? Is it possible not to consume so much?

Have you heard of the Little Brown Dress? Check out her blog and how she wore a little brown dress everyday for a whole year. Her statement – “I made one small, personal attempt to confront consumerism by refusing to change my dress for 365 days.”

What can YOU do?

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