- Nov 2021
Recent research suggests that globally, the wealthiest 10% have been responsible for as much as half of the cumulative emissions since 1990 and the richest 1% for more than twice the emissions of the poorest 50% (2).
Even more recent research adds to this:
See the annotated Oxfam report: Linked In from the author: https://hyp.is/RGd61D_IEeyaWyPmSL8tXw/www.linkedin.com/posts/timgore_inequality-parisagreement-emissionsgap-activity-6862352517032943616-OHL- Annotations on full report: https://hyp.is/go?url=https%3A%2F%2Foxfamilibrary.openrepository.com%2Fbitstream%2Fhandle%2F10546%2F621305%2Fbn-carbon-inequality-2030-051121-en.pdf&group=__world__
and the annotated Hot or Cool report: https://hyp.is/KKhrLj_bEeywAIuGCjROAg/hotorcool.org/hc-posts/release-governments-in-g20-countries-must-enable-1-5-aligned-lifestyles/ https://hyp.is/zo0VbD_bEeydJf_xcudslg/hotorcool.org/hc-posts/release-governments-in-g20-countries-must-enable-1-5-aligned-lifestyles/
This suggests that perhaps the failure of the COP meetings may be partially due to focusing at the wrong level and demographics. the top 1 and 10 % live in every country. A focus on the wealthy class is not a focus area of COP negotiations perse. The COP meetings are focused on nation states. Interventions targeting this demographic may be better suited at the scale of individuals or civil society.
Many studies show there are no extra gains in happiness beyond a certain point of material wealth, and point to the harmful impacts of wealth accumulation, known as affluenza, and show many health effects: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1950124/, https://theswaddle.com/how-money-affects-rich-people/, https://www.marketwatch.com/story/the-dark-reasons-so-many-rich-people-are-miserable-human-beings-2018-02-22, https://www.nbcnews.com/better/pop-culture/why-wealthy-people-may-be-less-successful-love-ncna837306, https://www.apa.org/research/action/speaking-of-psychology/affluence,
A Human Inner Transformation approach based on an open source praxis called Deep Humanity is one example of helping to transform affluenza and leveraging it to accelerate transition.
Anderson has contextualized the scale of such an impact in his other presentations but not here. A recent example is the temporary emission decreases due to covid 19. A 6.6% global decrease was determined from this study: https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00090-3#:~:text=After%20rising%20steadily%20for%20decades,on%20daily%20fossil%20fuel%20emissions. with the US contributing 13% due to lockdown impacts on vehicular travel (both air and ground). After the pandemic ends, experts expect a strong rebound effect.
A final cluster gathers lenses that explore phenomena that are arguably more elastic and with the potential to both indirectly maintain and explicitly reject and reshape existing norms. Many of the topics addressed here can be appropriately characterized as bottom-up, with strong and highly diverse cultural foundations. Although they are influenced by global and regional social norms, the expert framing of institutions, and the constraints of physical infrastructure (from housing to transport networks), they are also domains of experimentation, new norms, and cultural change. Building on this potential for either resisting or catalyzing change, the caricature chosen here is one of avian metaphor and myth: the Ostrich and Phoenix cluster. Ostrich-like behavior—keeping heads comfortably hidden in the sand—is evident in different ways across the lenses of inequity (Section 5.1), high-carbon lifestyles (Section 5.2), and social imaginaries (Section 5.3), which make up this cluster. Yet, these lenses also point to the power of ideas, to how people can thrive beyond dominant norms, and to the possibility of rapid cultural change in societies—all forms of transformation reminiscent of the mythological phoenix born from the ashes of its predecessor. It is conceivable that this cluster could begin to redefine the boundaries of analysis that inform the Enabler cluster, which in turn has the potential to erode the legitimacy of the Davos cluster. The very early signs of such disruption are evident in some of the following sections and are subsequently elaborated upon in the latter part of the discussion.
The bottom-up nature of this cluster makes it the focus area for civil society movements, human inner transformation (HIT) approaches and cultural methodologies.
Changing the mindset or paradigm from which the system arises is the most powerful place to intervene in a system as Donella Meadows pointed out decades ago in her research on system leverage points: https://donellameadows.org/archives/leverage-points-places-to-intervene-in-a-system/
The sleeping giant of billions of potential change actors remains dormant. How do we awaken them and mobilize them. If we can do this, it can constitute the emergence of a third unidentified actor in system change.
The Stop Reset Go (SRG) initiative is focused on this thematic lens, bottom-up, rapid whole system change, with Deep Humanity (DH) as the open-source praxis to address the needed shift in worldview advocated by Meadows. One of the Deep Humanity programs is based on addressing the psychological deficits of the wealthy, and transforming them into heroes for the transition, by redirecting their WEALTH-to-WELLth.
There are a number of strategic demographics that can be targeted in methodical evidence-based ways. Each of these is a leverage point and can bring about social tipping points.
A number of 2021 reports characterize the outsized impact of the top 1% and top 10% of humanity. Unless their luxury, high ecological footprint behavior is reeled in, humanity won't stand a chance. Annotation of Oxfam report: https://hyp.is/go?url=https%3A%2F%2Foxfamilibrary.openrepository.com%2Fbitstream%2Fhandle%2F10546%2F621305%2Fbn-carbon-inequality-2030-051121-en.pdf&group=__world__ Annotation of Hot or Cool report: https://hyp.is/go?url=https%3A%2F%2Fhotorcool.org%2Fhc-posts%2Frelease-governments-in-g20-countries-must-enable-1-5-aligned-lifestyles%2F&group=__world__
- carbon inequality
- top 1 %
- social tipping point
- luxury emissions
- wealth to wellth
- human inner transformation
- inner transformation
- hot or cool
- social tipping points
- Stop Reset Go
- Deep Humanity
- leverage points