"Economic Stagnation" – that's what they used to call it. Now we know that a no-growth economy is really a steady state, a stable economy that secures the future by not using up resources, not overloading the planet with humans, focusing on equitable solutions and being realistic about costs. We see an economy like that on Varok in The Webs of Varok.
The steady state on Varok is based on the following economic views:
- Growth costs more than it's worth on a full planet. As resources get scarce and/or CO2 levels rise, growth makes more problems than it solves.
- "Stagnation," if you will – the lack of economic growth – means more time to be creative, sharing more work time and infrastructure, like large appliances. It is the solution for the long run.
- A no-growth economy includes conservation, thoughtful selection of what technology to develop and leveling the economic playing field, so we can guarantee a lasting, humane future for our children.
In a recent blog, in The Daly News from the Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy, Rob Dietz summarizes the steady state with three short phrases:
. . . reducing input in economic activities . . .
minimizing waste outputs . . .
innovating more efficiently.
—Cary Neeper, 2014