Lester Brown

Lester R Brown is president of the Earth Policy Institute and the author of Plan B 4.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization.

Articles by this author

Views
Saturday, July 6, 2013 - 2:40pm
The Real Threat to Our Future is Peak Water
Peak oil has generated headlines in recent years, but the real threat to our future is peak water. There are substitutes for oil, but not for water. We can produce food without oil, but not without water.
Read more
Views
Thursday, July 26, 2012 - 12:37pm
The World is Closer to a Food Crisis Than Most People Realize
In the early spring this year, US farmers were on their way to planting some 96m acres in corn, the most in 75 years. A warm early spring got the crop off to a great start. Analysts were predicting the largest corn harvest on record.
Read more
Views
Wednesday, April 11, 2012 - 2:42pm
Getting the Market to Tell Ecological Truths
Moving the global economy off its current decline-and-collapse path depends on reaching four goals: stabilizing climate, stabilizing population, eradicating poverty, and restoring the economy's natural support systems.
Read more
Views
Tuesday, August 23, 2011 - 1:49pm
Expanding Deserts, Falling Water Tables and Toxins Driving People from Homes
WASHINGTON - People do not normally leave their homes, their families, and their communities unless they have no other option. Yet as environmental stresses mount, we can expect to see a growing number of environmental refugees. Rising seas and increasingly devastating storms grab headlines, but expanding deserts, falling water tables, and toxic waste and radiation are also forcing people from their homes.
Read more
Views
Tuesday, May 31, 2011 - 10:30am
The New Geopolitics of Food
In the United States, when world wheat prices rise by 75 percent, as they have over the last year, it means the difference between a $2 loaf of bread and a loaf costing maybe $2.10. If, however, you live in New Delhi, those skyrocketing costs really matter: A doubling in the world price of wheat actually means that the wheat you carry home from the market to hand-grind into flour for chapatis costs twice as much. And the same is true with rice. If the world price of rice doubles, so does the price of rice in your neighborhood market in Jakarta.
Read more
Views
Sunday, April 24, 2011 - 11:02am
This Will Be the Arab World's Next Battle
Long after the political uprisings in the Middle East have subsided, many underlying challenges that are not now in the news will remain. Prominent among these are rapid population growth, spreading water shortages, and growing food insecurity.
Read more
[field_image_caption-raw] News
Thursday, February 25, 2010 - 8:18am
Coal-Fired Power on the Way Out?
WASHINGTON - The past two years have witnessed the emergence of a powerful movement opposing the construction of new coal-fired power plants in the United States. Initially led by environmental groups, both national and local, it has since been joined by prominent national political leaders and many state governors. The principal reason for opposing coal plants is that they are changing the earth's climate. There is also the effect of mercury emissions on health and the 23,600 U.S. deaths each year from power plant air pollution.
Read more
Views
Tuesday, November 3, 2009 - 2:20pm
We Only Have Months, Not Years, to Save Civilization from Climate Change
For those concerned about global warming, all eyes are on December's UN climate change conference in Copenhagen . The stakes could not be higher. Almost every new report shows that the climate is changing even faster than the most dire projections of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in their 2007 report.
Read more
Views
Sunday, September 7, 2008 - 9:54am
Let's Use Wind to Power Cars
Legendary Texas oilman T. Boone Pickens is half right. We do need to harness this country's wind resources for a homegrown source of electricity, as he has been urging this summer in expensive television ads. And we do need to reduce the $700 billion we may soon be paying annually for imported oil. But part two of Pickens's plan -- to move natural gas out of electricity production and use it to fuel cars instead -- just doesn't make sense.
Read more
Views
Wednesday, April 23, 2008 - 3:40pm
End Food-to-Fuel Diversion: The World Is Getting Hungry
The willingness to try, fail and try again is the essence of scientific progress. The same sometimes holds true for public policy. It is in this spirit that we call upon Congress to revisit recently enacted federal mandates requiring the diversion of foodstuffs for production of biofuels.
Read more

Pages