3. PRODUCTION CIRCUITS / ECONOMY
The natural cycle:
What withers in autumn is
converted back into humus by the organisms in the soil, so that
healthy, nutrient-rich produce can grow again the following year.
3a.) Inspired by the “cradle-to-cradle” principle, what used to be considered “waste” becomes a “nutrient” for new production cycles
Our consumer society is built on a materialistic neoliberal economic system, which needs the egotism of the individual in order to satisfy its “growth compulsion”. As a result of this system, there is more and more centralization, which destroys “small businesses” as well as more and more human and natural coherences. This system is beginning to swallow itself and with it humans and nature. It is like a nuclear power plant out of control.
As long as we keep holding on to this neoliberal economic system, there is no chance of turning the world around! Problems are getting worse every day. Here is a description of the growing mountain of waste as an example:
On global average, each person “produces” 0.74 kilograms of waste a day. The amount generally rises with increasing prosperity.
In Germany, around 320,000 disposable cups are used for coffee every hour.
In 2016, Germans generated around 700 kilograms of waste per person, including 38 kilograms of plastic packaging waste per person.
By 2015, more than 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic waste had been generated globally. Around 9 percent of that was recycled, 12 percent incinerated and 79 percent disposed of in the environment! All of this waste is now spreading increasingly across our entire planet in the air, the water, the soil and even in living organisms from plants and animals to humans.
The total amount of plastic waste in the ocean is estimated at 86 million metric tons. Only 0.5 percent of that is believed to be floating on the surface of the sea. 39 percent are said to be floating in the head of water or in the depths of the open sea. 33.7 percent lies spread across the coasts and the seabed and 26.8 percent is said to be floating in coastal waters. Every year, around 10 million metric tons of waste end up in the sea. About 75 percent of it is plastic.
Every year, around 1,000,000 sea birds and 135,000 marine mammals die from contact with plastic waste. More than 600 marine species are harmed by plastic waste in the sea.
At least 15 percent of all species are in danger of ingesting or being strangled by plastic parts.
A fulmar has an average of 34 plastic parts in its stomach that weigh 0.31 grams. Researchers examined 38 different mineral waters and found microplastic particles in each mineral water. ₄₅
Human stool samples were also examined. On average, 20 microplastics were found per 10 grams of stool.
The list of current waste dramas is endless.
In a new social system that is responsible for people and nature, consumer goods are only bought if they are really needed.
They are manufactured sustainably and last a very long time, can be repaired and all parts are recyclable.
We remember the wisdom of our ancestors and learn already as children to produce our own body care and cleaning products with natural ingredients.
Expendable goods such as cleaning agents, shampoos or body care products and their packaging are made from naturally renewable raw materials and are highly compatible with the ecosystems into which they enter after their use.
Consumer goods such as cars, washing machines and computers are made to be durable and repairable from so-called “technical nutrients”. At the end of their life cycle, new devices are manufactured using a recycling process, which has been well thought out beforehand and which is gentle to people and nature.
Wherever possible, food is offered free of packaging or can be filled into containers that have to be brought along.
All unavoidable packaging materials are recyclable, refillable or compostable.
Production is generally based on the “5R Principle”:
1. R-efuse, 2. R-educe, 3. R-euse, 4. R-epurpose, 5. R-ecycle
FOLLOW YOUR HEART
3b.) The longevity of devices is promoted and products are manufactured, so that they have a 10-year guarantee and can be easily repaired
Premature aging of our devices: The majority of technical devices are produced with “planned obsolescence” from the outset, i.e., with planned predetermined breaking points that lead to an artificially induced, premature aging or the planned loss of function.
Frequent updates or other improvements – for example for smartphones – can also mean that users are no longer satisfied with the functionality of their product and therefore want or need to buy a new device
The ecologically responsible production takes into account the origin of the materials, as well as the human and mechanical labour input and the origin of the energy of all production processes involved.
All equipment is optimised for quality and durability.
Every qualified craftsman will be able to repair these devices using the instructions provided by the manufacturer.
3c.) All foods find their consumers – they are no longer simply thrown away or burned
Around 821 million people around the world go hungry, which equates to 11 percent of the world’s population. Every 10 seconds, a child dies of starvation. At the same time, around 1.3 billion metric tons of food are lost or wasted every year.
Source: https://www.careelite.de/welthunger-statistikenffekten/ Source : https://www.careelite.de/welthunger-statistiken-ffekten/
Wherever possible, farmers produce the food quantity agreed on with their customers. Food that is not sold is given free of charge to those in need, to animals or is composted and thus returned directly to the earth.
3d.) The goal of a company is no longer primarily profit, but the real satisfaction of customers’ needs, the happiness of employees and the enduring health of the earth
Most people only work for a living, not because they find true satisfaction in their work. They serve their employers more than they serve their own lives.
Most companies are only concerned with maximizing profit. In such “senseless” companies, which are usually managed in a very hierarchical way, even well-paid employees no longer feel comfortable.
Man and nature are exploited without regard for the consequences of producing cheaply and on mass – mostly those things that in the long run do not truly satisfy anybody anyway.
Companies are led by people who work together cooperatively, pursue the same vision and maintain a good and respectful relationship with their customers, suppliers, other partners and also with each other. They have one thing in common – the joy of their work and their compassion for fellow human beings, all living beings and Mother Earth.
They act at eye level and trust each other. They develop and optimise their processes so that they become more efficient and truly sustainable.
They respect the individual characteristics of each person and take them into account. Hierarchy in the classical sense no longer exists. There are different areas of responsibility. Everyone has a share in the success. As long as there is still money, the level of participation is jointly agreed.
3e.) We support regional manufacturers by no longer importing products that can be produced locally in sufficient quantities
Instead of buying locally and organically, most people prefer to shop (ostensibly) cheaply in the large international and industrial supermarkets. Yet this “cheap” way to consume harms their own health and the health of the planet considerably.
In conventional production – especially in greenhouses – pesticides and fertilizers are used, which cause the food to lose much of its taste and nutritional value.
The wrong track: Garlic from China? Apples from New Zealand? Tomatoes from Spain? One avocado a day from South America? Strawberries in Winter? See also: https://www.careelite.de/saisonal-einkaufen/
Strictly, there is nothing bought or imported from producers who exploit people, animals and nature. Products that have been treated with pesticides or are genetically modified are no longer imported.
3f.) Only small and medium-sized production and service companies are funded
Small and medium-sized companies suffer damage from the often unfair competition with large transnational corporations. For example, supermarkets have ousted the small neighborhood shops, agricultural giants have destroyed the livelihoods of many farmers, discounters from various sectors have ruined countless small, privately run regional traders, etc.
Production and sales in agriculture are hampered by increasingly restrictive norms that sometimes border on absurdity.
For example in the EU, a farmer is no longer allowed to feed his pigs with household or restaurant waste if he wants to sell their meat, but he can feed them with animal meal made from the carcasses of dead animals – even animals with diseases! Children no longer know what fresh cow’s milk or a ripe tomato truly tastes like. The cheapest price is all that matters, including labor, because the exploitation of workers is part of the equation for maximizing profit.
Discount chains and corporations are no longer needed and are therefore dissolved.
In the cities, food cooporatives and shopping groups are formed that purchase their products directly from the craftsmen and from organic farms within the region.
Computer apps help to locate producers of specialties and organize joint deliveries.
More and more regional shops are being opened with predominantly local products.
People are producing transparently and in line with people’s needs. This establishes a relationship to all living beings and to the foundations of life, to earth, water, the sun and air, which are involved in the creation of the products.
3g.) Research and development of renewable and sustainable energy on all levels
“150 years ago, the increasing demand for energy destroyed almost the entire forest in Europe. Only the rapidly growing coal mining industry put a stop to it, followed by the oil industry. It was with these fossil fuels that industrialization and thus modern world economy was made possible in the first place. All life on earth has changed completely as a result, both positively and negatively.
This artifice (delving?) into the limited treasure trove of Earth was necessary back then. But we have missed the opportunity to build a new and sustainable future with the help of this artifice into the treasury of fossil energies to this day.
Of course, there are now additional very sensible, alternative energies produced by sun, wind, water, biomass, etc. Work is also being carried out in various places on techniques of “free energy” that can be taken from a non-physical level.
But if we believe that these new forms of energy will save everything and that we can just continue to be addicted to consumption, then that is very naïve indeed. The production of alternative energies that also devour fossil fuels and raw materials will soon come to an end, even with the use of new forms of energy. This naive belief could be compared to a notorious smoker who thinks that organic cigarettes protect him from cancer.
We have to be more honest and pragmatic with ourselves. Anyone can, if they only wanted to, arrange their life using much less and more sustainable energy. By reducing consumer goods, a very large amount of energy could be saved everywhere. A lot of it has to do with where I set my priorities.“
A few thoughts about our dependence on electricity:
For several years, various media have repeatedly written about the “impending danger of a mega blackout” – i.e., a long-term power outage. While, less than 150 years ago, a power failure would hardly have made a relevant difference on the earth, we have become fully dependent on electricity in this relatively short period of time.
Let’s review our current life – what would happen if there was a sudden power cut? What would the consequences be if supermarket doors could not be opened? Have we thought about blocked digital payment methods? How long does food stay fresh in industrial freezers and at home?
Are we aware that heating water, drinking water and sewage are mostly transported by electric pumps?
This list is endless! Even just a few days of power failure would turn the world into total chaos with numerous casualties. If we also consider that almost all large and small power supplies are electronically regulated via the Internet and that these control systems can be attacked by hackers, then we can imagine how fragile our “modern” life truly is within this particular consumer area, which most of us take for granted. Finally, with 5G, plans are also being made to even control lamps, radiators, refrigerators, etc. via the Internet.
It makes sense to think about how each one of us can minimize our dependence on electricity – as always, the best energy policy is saving. So far, however, this has hardly been talked about, as no money can be made with that.
Saving energy is the best energy policy. In the transition phase, energy taxes accelerate the savings process. Additional energy tax revenues are initially used for the development and construction of sustainable energy systems and energy saving courses. Later on, they will support further local infrastructure activities.
In the near future, fossil fuels will cease to be used. Decentralized, self-sufficient power supply networks are refined and rolled out, with their main functions being available independent of the Internet. Every village, every community and every district can thus be self-sufficient with renewable energy.
Patents relating to suppressed technologies and inventions that contribute to the solution of energy problems and the healing of humans and the earth – for example of “Free Energy” – are made available to humankind, further developed and put to good use.
3h.) Sustainable transport
The current legal situation – for example in the EU – means that the production of products is connected with absurd transport routes: Raw materials from one country are processed in a second country with low wages, sometimes components from a third country are added, then these products are often packaged in a 4th country before they are transported back to the first country for sale, etc.
Our own car is often preferred to public transport, as most of us only compare the fuel costs with the bus and train tickets. This leads to the wider issue of private transport: Higher environmental pollution through the production of vehicles, exploitation of the earth’s natural resources through higher fuel consumption, air pollution, long transport routes for fuel, increased fine dust pollution from tire abrasion, increased noise level, high individual costs, higher risk of accidents, increased required space for storage.
Research into emission-free means of transport that are completely sustainable in their production is encouraged.
On the outskirts of the cities there are free public parking lots with good connections to public transport networks. Bike lanes and railway lines are being expanded and there are numerous car-sharing initiatives.
Public transport will be offered for free.
Here, too, the focus must be on the region. Production takes place locally, where we also find our favorite service providers and our jobs. This way our transport needs are minimized. We reduce commuting traffic, energy and need fewer cars. There is less noise, less pollution, fewer traffic fatalities and less stress.
Here, too, the aforementioned “energy tax” will help to automatically minimize transport routes in the transition phase.
3i.) Economy is based on fraternity and cooperation
Our economic systems are based on old theories that we find in today’s neoliberal theories aiming to maximize profits as the only goal. However, studies show that after reaching a certain threshold of prosperity, human happiness decouples this exponential curve of pursuit of profit, and decreases. The staggering numbers of people with depression, burnout and suicide are evidence of this.
The economy is put at the service of direct exchange once more. The economy serves to satisfy each other’s needs. Companies see themselves as partners instead of competitors. They thrive trough collaboration and cooperation.