Eco-Shopping is Not the Answer

| 1/23/2013 9:51:39 AM

The Story of Change still


When it comes to trashing the planet, Americans are ready for change, and the ever-growing popularity of biking and buying organic aren’t the only evidence. Across the political spectrum, people agree on ending subsidies that encourage environmental degradation. And a majority of Americans support a shift to clean energy and more regulation over toxic chemicals. Our economy is struggling, but many Americans believe that a better one is possible—one that puts people and the planet first. So why isn’t it happening?

That’s the question Annie Leonard, creator of the animated video series The Story of Stuff, addresses in “The Story of Change.”


Back in 2007, Leonard’s first video, “The Story of Stuff,” connected the dots between resource extraction and sweatshops, planned obsolescence and pollution, urban growth and the influence of corporations in government. This unsustainable system “didn’t just happen,” Leonard told the internet. “It was designed.”

By the tens of thousands, viewers emailed her to ask how they could help. Leonard made more videos, demystifying topics from emissions trading to the federal budget. Although the series has been popular, it hasn’t translated into public demand for change.

Jeff Biss
1/29/2013 1:26:54 AM

That things haven't changed, as in developing a more sustainable economy, doesn't surprise me because the free market has never produced an answer to anything, political will has. The market is people and people are more concerned about satisfying their desires than with sacrificing for the greater good, or even that of themselves. So, exercising "citizen muscle" is the only thing that has ever produced an answer. The free market, eco-shopping, will only determine which toothpaste is more popular, not whether orangutans or pangulins will not be slaughtered or their habitat destroyed.

Stephan Tychon
1/23/2013 5:35:42 PM

Systemic global change:

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