Junk mail – the bane of sustainability efforts
Nobody writes letters any more. Except advertisers . . . and they are writing like crazy. I typically receive between two and five love letters a day from banks, vacation programs, insurance companies, and magazines. I’m just not that romantic of a guy.
If you, too, are not so institutionally romantic, here’s a solution from an interesting source: Crunchy and Chic.
The site provides direct, pragmatic tips on how to stem the biblical flow of paper in junk mail. Of course, it is now about the only thing keeping the US Postal Service afloat . . . not that that’s a good reason to keep it going. We may simply be witnessing the slow, very expensive death of an extraordinary system created by Benjamin Franklin that has finally run its course.
The Earth Clock gives us moment to moment glimpses of our crowded neighborhood
July 2011 the Earth surpassed seven billion humans. For a very long time, we grew as if on a comfortable stroll . . . from the dawn of humankind until 1804 when we surpassed our first billion. Since then, we’ve quickened our stroll; our being “fruitful and multiplying” sped way ahead of our capacity to “have dominion.” In my lifetime, the earth’s population has more than doubled
Year 1804 1927 1960 1974 1987 1999 2011 2023 2035
People 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 billions
Yrs between – – 123 33 14 13 12 12 12 12
Our growth has slowed in only way – the rate has been constant, and appears it may be so for a while. Birth rates have been falling for nearly 40 years, but growth keeps on growing. It’s just that the size of the stock (people) is so large (7 billion), and the momentum so great, that it takes a long while to adjust. We know the big growth in the population will happen in Asia and Africa; that Europe’s population will likely decrease for a few decades; that US population will grow, but slowly; that the population will likely stabilize as we near 2050.
Less than 40 years away.
We also know that such a vast population creates unprecedented pressure on local resources that 7 billion people need to thrive. We will need to summon every bit of strength and wit to slow our breath-taking numbers, while also preserving resources for future generations.
For a quick check on the numbers, click this link below . . . and you’ll go directly to the Earth Clock.