User:David (davd)

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I am living sustainably at a very low level, and have done so for more than 10 years now[edit]

* I have independent "proof" that my very frugal living is sustainable. I have put my living conditions into the Ecological Footprint calculation. This is based on Mathis Wackernagel's extensive studies. These have been reported in the US journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) (media comment here). The Ecological-Footprint-2.0 FAQ has:

<> One of the global footprint calculations shows the sustainable footprint level is 39 global acres (15.7 global hectares) of bioproductive space for every person in the world.

With a global population of 9 billion for the year 2050, the available space will be reduced to 26 acres.

{Neither of those include leaving} room for the 25 million other species.

* Some comments in my letter to the Positive Futures list run by Communications for a Sustainable Future (CSF), at show why I count

my footprint as only 32.2 acres, or less than 83 percent of what's "available" to a human.

* So everyone, everywhere, could live like me and still about 17% of the earth's productive capacity would be left untouched for all other other living things on earth.

{For comparison:
USA: 6.3 earths, 246 acres (100 ha); Canada: 5.7 earths, 220 acres (89 ha); New Zealand: 3.7 earths, 142 acres (57.5 ha); United Kingdom: 3.1 earths, 119 acres (48 ha); France: 2.2 earths, 86 acres (35 ha).}

I call what I do extreme Voluntary Simplicity; but there is some room for living higher than my ascetic level [edit]

<>We haven't yet reached 9 billion people, though my life would still be sustainable then, so currently one could live at a 50% higher level (which would decrease as the population on earth increased).

<>The Ecological Footprint calculation makes the assumption that one is living in a North American style, with: car, winter heating (and summer air-conditioning) and meat eating. I'd guess there was a further factor of 2 there, allowing people currently to live at a consumption level up to 3 times higher than mine (though with no space reserved for other living things). (My "diet" page is here.)

I could go back to my 1992 consumption level. (It includes my front page newspaper photo.) Living sustainably, voluntary simplicity, can be done somewhere between my extremely low level and Diane Fitzsimmons' list. It's a matter of choice.

We in New Zealand in the early 1950s used to live as she describes; she's in Norman OK. {in 1957 I gained Amateur Radio callsign: ZL1ASX }.

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my World View.

my Personal Actions.

What sustainability is, in my view.

Visualising a better Future.

How we live at home, part of: Should one work hard?, {94 kB}; original letter, in Aug.'99, no longer available.

what is Work for? Is work needed, to be human?

Living on little; some philosophy; & My reason for existence.

what I think of my life.

My wife and I (both over 71yo) planned to retire to an autonomous house; I had the PV electrical system, until it was installed for two off-grid houses, one: daughter-and-SIL's on Kawau Island, north of Auckland NZ.

Discussing some details of my life.

our family travels in Malaysia and India; (what we learnt).

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Two years' solar PV energy use; daily measurements plus a cosine fit: (see link to image, below graph)

Location photo: Google map: DMsDailyPVenergy.gif - image created by David MacClement.