How the Rich are Destroying the Earth

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Chelsea Green Publishing Company, 2008 - Business & Economics - 124 pages
6 Reviews
A best seller in France, and already translated into Spanish, Italian, Greek, and Korean, Hervé Kempf's How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth now appears in its first English edition. Bringing to bear more than twenty years of experience as an environmental journalist, Kempf describes the invincibility that many of the world's wealthy feel in the face of global warming, and how their unchecked privilege is thwarting action on the single most vexing problem facing our world.

In this important primer on the link between global ecology and the global economy, Kempf makes the following observations: First, that the planet's ecological situation is growing ever worse, despite the efforts of millions of engaged citizens around the world. And second, despite environmentalists' emphasis that "we're all in the same boat," the world's economic elites--who continue to benefit by plundering the environment--have access to "lifeboats" that insulate them from the resulting catastrophes.

Societies have not been able to effectively combat the expanding ecological crisis because it is intimately linked to the social crisis in which the ruling form of capitalism has been organized to impede democratic initiatives. This link explains the failure to make progress against the greatest emergency of our time, because in this relationship the oligarchy plays an essential and destructive role. For this reason, solving the ecological crisis depends on disrupting the power of the world's elite.

We cannot understand the entwined ecological and social crises, Kempf argues, if we don't see them as the two sides of the same disaster--a disaster that comes from a system piloted by a dominant social strata that has no drive other than greed, no ideal other than conservatism, no dream other than technology. But Kempf also calls for measured optimism: "Despite the scale of the challenges that await us, solutions are emerging and--faced with the sinister prospects the oligarchs promote--the desire to remake the world is being reborn."

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Review: How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth

User Review  - Sho - Goodreads

Haunting and relevant, Kempf's fearless forecasts and observation goes to show the real roots of the stagnation of "saving the planet from ecological demise" movement. Read full review

Review: How the Rich Are Destroying the Earth

User Review  - Chris - Goodreads

This is translated from French. Kempf is the Environmental Editor of Le Monde, a Journalist and the founder of Reporterre, a Web site devoted to discussion about the environment and social justice ... Read full review


Environmental Crisis Social Crisis
The Powerful of This World
How the Oligarchy Exacerbates

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About the author (2008)

Herve Kempf is the environmental editor of Le Monde, France's most influential daily newspaper, and the founder of Reporterre, a Web site devoted to discussion about the environment and social justice. He lives in France

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