York hosts conference on sustaining a green economy

CANSEE

Brian Czech, champion of a steady-state economy, will give the keynote address Nov. 1 at an upcoming conference at York on sustaining a green economy.

Czech will argue for alternatives to a growth-based economy, the subject of his latest book, Supply Shock: Economic Growth at the Crossroads and the Steady State Solution. His is delivering the keynote at the biennial conference of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics (CANSEE). The conference theme is Sustaining the Commons: Ideas and Actions for a Green Economy. Academics, policy makers, practitioners and activists from across traditional disciplines are expected to attend the conference Oct. 31 to Nov. 2 at Keele campus.

Czech is founder and president of the Centre for the Advancement of Steady State Economy, whose mission is to gain wide public support for stabilized population and consumption. He earned a PhD in renewable natural resources studies from the University of Arizona with a minor in political science, and teaches ecological economics at Virginia Tech. A prolific writer about sustainable economics, he is also the author of Shoveling Fuel for a Runaway Train, which calls for an end to uneconomic growth, and The Endangered Species Act: History, Conservation Biology, and Public Policy.

The opening plenary, Ecological Economics, Degrowth and Denial: The Role of Social Engineering, will feature William Rees, co-developer of ecological footprint analysis. Other plenaries will discuss the business case for sustainability and economics for a flourishing Earth. There will be a panel discussion on societal uptake of green fiscal measures, focusing on the Canadian experience with environmental taxes and incentives, and policies for environmental sustainability.

Speakers will give presentations on topics such as Canadian energy and climate policy, complexity science, limits to growth, green indicators, systems thinking and urban sustainability.

York faculty participating at the conference include environmental studies professors Peter Victor, founder of CANSEE and author of Managing without Growth: Slower by Design, not Disaster; Ellie Perkins, whose research focuses on feminist ecological economics, climate justice and community environmental education; and Christina Hoicka, an expert in sustainable energy economics.

The event is sponsored by York’s Faculty of Environmental Studies, the David Suzuki and Ivey foundations, Green Analytics and BlueGreen Canada. It is funded by a grant from the Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada.

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