Stories by Donella H. Meadows

is an adjunct professor of environmental studies at Dartmouth College. subscribe to Donella H. Meadows's feed

Posted on: Jun 17, 2004, Source: AlterNet

In an updated version of an influential 1972 book on the dangers facing the planet, the authors confirm that the earth is taxed and overcommitted. But, as they say, knowing is half the battle.

Posted on: Apr 9, 2001, Source: AlterNet

Popular columnists Donella "Dana" Meadows died on February 20, 2001. The following is excerpted from a manuscript she wrote before her death about her book "The Limits to Growth," which sold more than 9 million copies. It is being released to coincide with Earth Day, during which memorial services will be held in cities across the nation to commemorate Dana.

Posted on: Feb 5, 2001, Source: AlterNet

The place to watch for global warming -- the sensitive point, the canary in the coal mine -- is the Arctic. When the planet as a whole warms by one degree, the poles will warm by about three degrees. Unfortunately, this is just what is happening.

Posted on: Jan 29, 2001, Source: AlterNet

The biotech biz can't make grass into wool and lambs either, though the sheep I used to have, which were not at all smart, used to do it with great reliability. Sometimes I wonder, with all our supposed progress, what we're rushing toward and what we're leaving behind.

Posted on: Jan 22, 2001, Source: AlterNet

Energy markets nationwide are being deregulated. State lawmakers pledge they won't repeat California's mistakes. What will stop them?

Posted on: Jan 15, 2001, Source: AlterNet

I will never believe he won. I'll always think he got a minority of both the popular and the electoral vote. To me he'll always be President-Under-False-Pretense.

Posted on: Jan 1, 2001, Source: AlterNet

What do you do when you want to move fast but the way ahead is dark, possibly dangerous and almost entirely unknown? Rational people would proceed cautiously. When it comes to the environment, the U.S. does not.

Posted on: Dec 18, 2000, Source: AlterNet

South Africa adopted the first ever global agreement banning persistent organic pollutants -- chemicals that are immediately toxic or cause cancer or reproductive difficulties or birth defects -- on December 10. If ratified, 12 POPs will be affected.

Posted on: Dec 11, 2000, Source: AlterNet

When historians of the future tell the story of the 2000 Presidential election, they will show both sides playing tricks to tilt the vote.

Posted on: Nov 26, 2000, Source: AlterNet

The world is fixated on building up money capital at the expense everywhere of social and natural capital. If you count money, the future of the world looks good. When you count nature and societal health the picture is different.

Posted on: Nov 13, 2000, Source: AlterNet

While the nation was absorbed in its election follies, environmentalists David Brower and Don Michael passed away. The two giants lived lives that sent powerful messages to the two dwarfs vying for control of the country.

Posted on: Nov 5, 2000, Source: AlterNet

Farmers who increase the humus content of their soil may one day be able to charge us all for slowing global warming. Want to know how much greenhouse gas your organic garden absorbs?

Posted on: Oct 25, 2000, Source: AlterNet

Bush and Gore's fuzzy math has finally forced the press to cover some of the issues. But the substance-glass of Election 2000 is still only five percent full.

Posted on: Oct 23, 2000, Source: AlterNet

"The "debates" are over. But the candidates are still on the road, where they might be queried by an unscripted citizen. Here's what I keep hoping someone will ask."

Posted on: Oct 15, 2000, Source: AlterNet

Given the uncertainty surrounding the risks of water flouridation, isn't there a better way to protect children's teeth? Why fluoridate the whole water supply, the millions of gallons with which we flush toilets and take showers and water lawns, if our only target is children's teeth?

Posted on: Oct 5, 2000, Source: AlterNet

I wish everyone would stop calling them "debates." At best, they are carefully controlled soundbite gotcha matches. Like most everything in our campaign process, they insult voters and undermine democracy.

Posted on: Oct 1, 2000, Source: AlterNet

"Consumers exerted amazing power over Nike, Starbucks, and Home Depot by refusing to buy things made in ways that violate our values. But we have a long way to go to reform factory farming."

Posted on: Sep 24, 2000, Source: AlterNet

Inheritance taxes infuriate the rich who focus narrowly on one life, one set of children, and one ardent need to feel good about themselves. When the broader context is considered, sensible reasons for taxing estates emerge.

Posted on: Sep 13, 2000, Source: AlterNet

"Now that I've suffered under one firsthand, I can understand why people hate environmental laws. Something has gone wrong when the workings of a law start undermining its very purpose."

Posted on: Sep 10, 2000, Source: AlterNet

The growth imperative shepherding American farmers and fishers is leading them to the edge of a high cliff. As output exceeds capacity, the price of goods like corn, timber, and fish falter. Idled machines, laid-off workers, bankrupt families, and environmental decay soon follow.