Jeremy Grantham has been doing the math, and is convinced that world resources are way insufficient to support the current population.
Grantham believes that the planet can only sustainably support about 1.5 billion humans, versus the 7 billion on Earth right now (heading to 10-12 billion). For all of history except the last 200 years, the human population has been controlled via the limits of the food supply. Grantham thinks that, eventually, the same force will come into play again.
This is where we should be innovating – how do we match the level of resources to the (growing) need? Space travel is the old school sci-fi remedy: let’s go to Mars!
Ben Paynter at Fast Company has a post on the hidden costs of Thanksgiving – many of you travel, and so do your groceries.
Studies show that most groceries travel about 1,500 miles from the farm to store shelves. The same distance covered by your average car (one that gets about 30 miles per gallon) pumps out about 1,200 pounds of CO2, according to this math. Most commodities arrive in bulk on the back of a flatbed, so the impact is likely even greater.
Follow the link and check out the charts that will help you decide what kind of PIE you’ll want to be eating based on where you are (e.g. pecan pie is the thing, here in Texas where pecans are plentiful). You’re not going to save the world by choosing one pie over another, but it’s worth thinking about the true cost of the food on your table.