Transition to a different host

More recent New Era postings may be found here.

News from Shaun Chamberlin

teqs2 logoShaun brings news from the Fleming Policy Centre. In the December 2015 TEQs newsletter he writes:

“As the fallout continues, many of you may be confused by the outcome of the recent COP21 climate talks in Paris, variously reported as:

“A victory for all of the planet and future generations” ~ John Kerry, U.S. Secretary of State
We did it! A turning point in human history! ~ Avaaz
“10/10 for presentation, 4/10 for content” ~ Kevin Anderson, climate scientist
A historic moment and positive step forward … but not the legally-binding science and justice-based agreement that was needed ~ Friends of the Earth UK
“A sham” ~ Friends of the Earth International
“It’s a fraud really, a fake” ~ James Hansen, climate scientist
Our leaders have shown themselves willing to set our world on fire ~ Naomi Klein, author/activist
“Epic fail on a planetary scale” ~ New Internationalist
The US is a cruel hypocrite. This is a deliberate plan to make the rich richer and the poor poorer ~ Lidy Nacpil, Asian People’s Movement on Debt and Development

COP21: a clear win for political reality – a clear loss for every life form dependent on a livable climate

Our take is that when there is a fundamental rift between the physical reality of our changing climate and the political reality tasked with responding to this, this agreement – based on voluntary emissions pledges which even if met would mean more emissions in 2030 than today – is a clear win for political reality. In other words, a clear loss for every life form dependent on a livable climate.

Sadly, it is not hard to identify the agendas of those hailing the Paris agreement as a great success. The whole conference has, in essence, been smoke and mirrors, distracting us from the real work of reintegrating human society with the reality that it depends on. As most impartial observers predicted, the UN have again failed to deliver an agreement that preserves the future of either humanity or the wider biosphere.

The Paris agreement is, in short, based on non-binding commitments to deliver on dodgy mathematics through the application of technologies that do not yet (and may never) exist.

TEQs is the alternative – a Citizens’ Energy Framework for retaining both a benign climate and secure access to energy.

In other words, everything we love.


David Fleming’s Lean Logic


Shaun Chamberlin prepared his great friend’s manuscript for publication, and marked the recent fifth anniversary of Fleming’s death by releasing his editor’s preface.

lean logic 2 coverLeft: the cover for the full posthumous publication of TEQs creator David Fleming’s unique masterwork Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It, which is now available for pre-order, and has its own dedicated web page. Note that TEQs is only one of 400+ entries therein, so this book gives a MUCH broader idea of Fleming’s radical vision.

Shaun has also produced a paperback version in a more conventional read-it-front-to-back format. Surviving the Future: Culture, Carnival and Capital in the Aftermath of the Market Economy is intended to provide a lighter introduction to Fleming’s entertaining writing.

Both books will be published simultaneously in the summer. Pre-orders can now be placed with Chelsea Green (U.S. orders – currently offering a 35% pre-Christmas discount!) or the Green Shopping Network (U.K./European orders)

Please follow our Twitter account: @TEQsUK

Read the whole newsletter here:[UNIQID]


News from the Centre for Environmental Research & Education (Mumbai)

Co-founders Rashneh and Katy celebrated the award given to CERE’s Janjri Jasani at the India Sustainability Leadership Summit & Awards.


janjri jasaniJanjri is currently Head of Sustainability Services at CERE and has co-authored a number of CERE publications. She graduated with a Masters in Environmental Protection and Management from the University of Edinburgh, following a BA in Biology with a focus on Evolutionary Biology from Northwestern University in Chicago. She is currently working with the CERE as a Senior Researcher and Project In-Charge of the Carbon Map & Cap Project.

Her interests centre on climate change science, sustainable development & urban solutions to environmental issues. She is interested in the role environmental education can play as a solution to local and global environmental issues.

Sustainable Leadership was set up by a group of young professionals from different areas of knowledge and expertise, from economics to mass media, from entrepreneurship to international relations, united under a common understanding that only sustainable leadership is capable to circumvent the present problems of our societies.

Only innovation and creativity will ensure workable, stable and realistic solutions to the world contemporary issues. The aim is to engage business, government and the social sector to collaborate for sustainable solutions.

News from Helena Norberg-Hodge

ial logo


Helena writes:

Helena in JapanIn our last update we issued an open invitation to join the International Alliance for Localization (IAL) – a new cross-cultural network of groups and individuals focused on resistance, renewal, and radically new visions of development and progress.

The response has exceeded our most optimistic expectations. In less than two months, individuals from 28 different countries have joined. These include farmers, teachers, builders, community organizers, environmental stewards, peace activists, homesteaders, students, health workers, business consultants, writers, engineers, artists, radio producers, researchers, and more.

Many organizations have also signed up: groups focused on social justice, ecological restoration, spiritual values, sustainable food and farming, holistic education, and policy research and advocacy. (Below, farmers’ markets were pioneered in Britain and elsewhere by ISEC founded by Helena and others, which promotes locally based alternatives to the global consumer culture by writing, filming and practical action.)

farmers market - scandinavian or

Among these are:

Swadeshi Jagaran Manch (India);

Digo Bikas Institute (Nepal);

Localize West Midlands (UK);

The Sustainability Institute and Greyton Transition Town (South Africa);

Noakhali Rural Development Society (Bangladesh);

Centre for Global Justice (Mexico/USA);

Gaia Education (UK);

Holy Cross International Justice Office (USA);

Small Farm Training Center (USA), and many more.

This broad-based interest in the IAL shows that people worldwide are beginning to recognize that localization is a viable strategy for positive change on a global level.


NE GT food & poverty fabian 2015 2 prefaceThe ‘Hungry for Change’ report was launched in parliament this week. Highlight snapshot from Geoff’s preface follow, right:

The commissioners’ recommendations include:

  • A pilot tax on sugary drinks so that the efficacy of taxes on unhealthy food and drink can be assessed.
  • A review of current advertising codes to identify where existing rules are being flouted and children are being bombarded by unhealthy promotions.
  • A new cross-departmental minister with responsibility for eliminating household food insecurity in the UK.
  • Action to reduce acute household food insecurity caused by social security benefit sanctions, delays and errors.
  • An inquiry to identify effective ways of removing poverty premiums for key living costs including food, utilities, housing, household appliances, and transport.
  • Local authorities establish food access plans that will address any physical barriers to affordable, nutritious food in their area.


NE GT food & poverty fabian 2015 graphic

Managing poverty: the Fabian Commission has uncovered a crisis of food access for many households in the UK. There are multiple cases of parents – usually mothers  – going hungry to feed their children or having to prioritise calories over nutrients to afford their weekly food shop. Many people are feeling a deep sense of anxiety from the struggle to manage serious squeezes in household budgets that arises from the cost of living rising faster than income.

The Commission defines this state of living as ‘household food insecurity’: the inability to acquire or consume an adequate quality or sufficient quantity of food in socially acceptable ways, or the uncertainty that one will be able to do so. But a lack of official measurement means nobody can be clear how many people are affected by household food insecurity in the UK.

Reducing and eventually ending household food insecurity needs an active approach from government to tackle its structural drivers, and the Commission have produced a 14 point plan for how the government can create a food system that works for people on and near the breadline.

Read the full report here >>

A message from Cultivate, which works with FEASTA

An invitation from Cultivate to The Convergence Festival which builds on Ireland’s rich tradition of co-operatives and the current interest in community ownership


Cultivate  is a practical sustainability organisation which aims to equip people to respond to the twin issues of energy vulnerability and climate change by providing access to the knowledge and tools that cultivate sustainable lifestyles and resilient communities. It ‘co-works’ with think-tank Feasta, co-founded by New Era networker, the late Richard Douthwaite, which aims to identify the characteristics (economic, cultural and environmental) of a truly sustainable society, articulate how the necessary transition can be effected and promote the implementation of the measures required for this purpose.

Read more here:

News from Sabine McNeill: November 5th London meeting

The issue of children’s rights is being recognised as pan-European

With the scandalous and heart-rending case of the couple whose baby was adopted after they were unjustly accused of mistreating him – and the apparent unwillingness of the authorities to return the child to his maligned parents, we recognise the need for work done by people like Sabine.


Regular readers will remember July’s post in which it was recorded that MPs Austin Mitchell and John Hemming both encouraged/congratulated Sabine on going to Brussels as all three agree that human rights issues are not ‘getting anywhere in the UK’. The latest news:

sabine 2posterBackground: at the end of May Sabine had welcomed ‘a critical new beginning’, as Latvian Tatjana Zdanoka, a young MEP, took the lead in the EU Parliament. Latvian Laila Brice who has been fighting Merton Council for her daughter for years presented her petition on the same day as Sabine did in March last year. Since then, Latvia and Lithuania have followed Slovakia in questioning the UK Government.

In meetings and by handing a folder of evidence to EC vice president Frans Timmermans, Sabine has been operating on behalf of all the children who have been wrongly taken into care and adopted against their parents’ will. To hear an EU presentation by Sabine click here.