A climber is in jeopardy as they hang onto a cliff by their fingertips. Image for episode one of the Civic Revolution podcast series which talks about the perils of endless economic expansion and our planetary boundaries.

Economic expansion versus planetary boundaries.

In this audiobook episode, we look at the predicament of humankind: the quest for endless economic expansion in a world of finite resources and planetary boundaries. We don’t need to look far to see the broken links between people and places, past and present, imagination and reality. We dispel some of the myths that are putting us in jeopardy, rediscovering the power we have to tell different stories that can reinvent the places where we live and lead to a better future. Adapted from the original book, Civic Revolution, and narrated by its author.

Excerpt from this episode:

“The idea of ‘overshoot’ is simple enough. When we don’t pay enough attention and go past a stopping point, that’s overshoot. Taking this concept further, there’s such a thing as ‘Earth Overshoot Day’ that marks the calendar date when humanity’s resource consumption for the year exceeds Earth’s capacity to regenerate those resources that year.

It’s a moving date, calculated annually – an indication of how quickly we start living beyond our means. In the UK, Overshoot Day in 2023 was on 23rd May. Of course, things did not stop on this date. For the rest of the year, we lived on the resources of future generations instead, depleting more than our fair share of natural resources and putting more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

The new narrative of hope, and of living within our means, has its roots – perhaps surprisingly – in the places where we live. We have always been citizens (in the literal sense, as inhabitants of a particular place) before we became consumers or consumed by our work. How we live together in our neighbourhoods and towns is every bit as important to the environment as the natural habitats we wish to protect.

Living within our planetary boundaries is the outcome, although the aim is to fulfil everyone’s hope for a better quality of life that can last. How this revolution becomes a reality will depend on what we choose to do next.

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