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Enough Is Enough: Building a Sustainable Economy in a World of Finite Resources

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  216 ratings  ·  40 reviews
It’s time for a new kind of economy

We’re overusing the earth’s finite resources, and yet excessive consumption is failing to improve our lives. In Enough Is Enough, Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill lay out a visionary but realistic alternative to the perpetual pursuit of economic growth—an economy where the goal is not more but enough.

They explore specific strategies to conserv
Paperback, 240 pages
Published January 7th 2013 by Berrett-Koehler Publishers (first published December 5th 2012)
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Vivek Vivek Yes, definitely.

As the question is quite broad, so it the answer. :-)

You might find it good if you are interested in environmental or social sustain…more
Yes, definitely.

As the question is quite broad, so it the answer. :-)

You might find it good if you are interested in environmental or social sustainability issues and solutions. (less)

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May 15, 2016 rated it did not like it
Well-intentioned , but an awful lot of nonsense. I'm not sure how he's going to get people to quit breeding; we've known about overpopulation for decades and people just keep breeding more. There's also a creepy -to me- romanticization of poor countries and their noble savages . They have the exact same problems we do, just not enough wealth to make it obvious, and 90% of the people there would choose an American lifestyle if they could. "Good" carbon use ratings are tied to poverty, and people ...more
The idea of a “steady-state economy” is hard to wrap one’s mind around. What is it? Why is it a good idea? And, most daunting, how do we arrive at a steady-state economy? This clearly laid out, easy-to-read book has answers to these questions.

A steady-state economy is, basically, an economy that prioritizes enough over more. In a steady-state economy, resource consumption and population remain stable while well-being is prioritized over consumption. Rather than changing quantitatively, a steady-
David Kimball
Mar 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Enough is Enough

“Enough is Enough” by Rob Dietz and Dan O’Neill
(Book Review by David Kimball)

As the authors say in their Preface, “Enough is Enough was conceived as a collection of policy proposals for achieving a prosperous, but non-growing economy (known as a steady-state economy)”. So it is an apologetic for steady-state economics. (“Apologetics – the discipline of defending a position through the systematic use of information. Wikipedia) As such, it deals with ecological economics at the mac
Oct 15, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: environment
Although the goals are laudable, the primary one being to propose a transition to a steady state or no-growth economy, this ends up reading like a laundry list of good-to-have items alongside the main one, like equitable wealth, socially conscious business structures that I found to be extraneous to the core concept. The word utopia is never mentioned, but one gets the sense that the authors are aiming to create such a society where everyone is fulfilled, everyone is equal (in wealth), nature ab ...more
Randall Wallace
Dec 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Today’s deepest problems have one elegant solution: introducing the steady state economy. The coolest members of the human community around us seek social and environmental justice for all, and after capitalism crashes, it’s replacement, the steady state economy, seeks the same goal. “We need a new economic structure designed for stability instead of growth.” We must now head towards this steady state economy based on improving quality of life, instead increasing GDP – moving now from the concep ...more
Gerry Flanagan
Mar 30, 2013 rated it liked it
A critical topic, but not enough detail. When someone says that a model shows that a steady state economy is feasible, I want to know the details of the model. However, a very good collection of references, including internet references I found valuable.
May 18, 2015 rated it liked it
Quite thought-provoking but the solutions are just too unrealistic.
Anna Kladova
Sep 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I am not saying that's everything you have to know about sustainable economics and degrowth. But these are the basics, which anyone living nowadays is obliged to know. I am consciously using "obliged". That's a manifesto against the consumerist religion ruling our everyday lifes, our ideals from childhood on, against the obsession with the GDP growth, against the today's monetary principles allowing banks to create money out of thin air through loans, against the tyranny of the corporations whic ...more
Ecoute Sauvage
Feb 11, 2013 rated it did not like it
I found the concept behind this book appalling - never in the history of humanity has there been a "steady-state" economy, and none can materialize because these authors say so.

Unless they have suspended all biological systems laws as well as the laws of thermodynamics the above applies to ALL systems, not just human societies.
Nov 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
Offers a rational, equitable framework for the future of life on a finite planet.
Keith Akers
Aug 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Wow. This is a milestone book in an area new to much of even the well-educated public: the world of finite resources. But it's also a tough book to review, because there are so many different possible audiences. I'll summarize my review first, then go into the details. This is a long review for which I apologize; in due course, I will sort out my thoughts on this subject and put it on my blog or publish it somewhere. The main audience for my review is people who already get "limits to growth." T ...more
Feb 09, 2019 rated it liked it
An interesting read and a broad overview of the ideas behind stable state economics. It doesn't go into any great depth on any one subject, bit instead touches on a wide breadth of subjects which determine how our environment, society, and economy all effect each other.

On the whole I enjoyed it and agree with most of their analyses for the unavoidable problems our 'unlimited growth' model is hurtling us towards. Our current society is based on an unhealthy and unfulfilling addiction to 'more'.
Feb 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: business
What happens when growth is the only thing to measure? When will it stop, as physics and common sense state there is a limit to everything. Climate change is the result of growth without regard to costs.

Why is a town happy that it has a growing population? Or that a person is buying more shoes or pants or toys, even though the house already has more than it can use?

The authors posit the question, when is it enough. This fits a lot of what I've been thinking about over the last year. How can I
Jacob North
Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Wow-what an excellent book on our current socio-econo-enviro crisis! Dietz does an excellent job pulling together so many ideas on how we can finally establish society which respects our natural resources and allows humanity to thrive by rejecting the biggest lie we've accepted-that economic growth is a satusfactory measure of progress. Dietz lays out a charming and undeniably solid perspective of the Steady-State Economy, including our current actions, how they've failed us, potential solutions ...more
Aug 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed reading about the concepts of a steady state economy and how a society would function without the continual drive for growth. It’s not amazingly well written in my opinion (reads like a uni thesis) but the ideas are good. It’s a bit depressing then to look around at the unchecked consumerism and waste, overpopulation and poor political decisions.
Lindsay Lane
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
Enough is enough discusses economical and environmental sustainability and stresses overpopulation as the issue. It is a heavy read, and reading the whole book is unnecessary to know the point they are getting at, so I put it away. It is, to its benefit, concisely organized.
Nicolas Quattromani
Jun 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Everyone needs to read this. Our current way of life is bringing about the apocalypse, and this book thoughtfully explains how we can still get out of our predicament.
Nov 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A great book that is very solutions focused and deals with the issue of our time - the issue with our current economic system (with a story of continuous growth without consideration for our biological limts and overall happiness as humans), how we can change - and this is SPECIFICALLY - not just ideal, getting to a steady state economy, how and why. Macro focused but very good - everyone should read.

Here is him giving a talk on the book, in Vancouver,

Dec 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
As someone who routinely skipped attending economics class in college due to boredom, I am surprised by how fascinated I was by this book. The steady state economy described by the authors made more and more sense to me the further I read along in the book. While I admit I am skeptical that we can overcome what I think one of the larger hurdles is to achieving a steady state economy, i.e., human greed and self-interest (ironic as the authors make a persuasive case that people will actually be mo ...more
Bradley Jarvis
Jun 30, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
"Enough is Enough" makes the case for a no-growth, or "steady-state" economy, while providing a solid set of prescriptions for creating one. The steady-state economy is the desired result of ecological economics, which sees the global economy as a part of, and therefore subordinate to, the Earth's biosphere, which we are sabotaging through our pursuit of endless growth in material consumption and waste. Besides, the authors argue, our current system was designed in a totally different kind of wo ...more
Jan 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing

With this book the authors simply and clearly offer concrete steps to be taken to improve the lives of the average person. Enough is Enough speaks to people about jobs, healthcare, and happiness and in doing so dismantles the myth perpetuated in our society that equates the GDP with prosperity for all and debunks the myth that conserving the environment can only be done at the expense of people and their way of life. Enough is Enough explains why the very opposite is true. In making the idea of
Feb 05, 2013 rated it really liked it
If you were one of the many people annoyed by the occupy protests and their lack of a coherent message, you should probably read this book to get a good idea of just how shitty our current system is. It's a good overview of the work and ideas that are being done to address this frustrating, complex system.

The solutions are all built around human well being and happiness. I really hope my kids can live in the world described in this book, and not in the pathetic, miserable shit storm we have toda
Kate Lawrence
Feb 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: environment
I am glad to see a serious and wide-ranging discussion of the need for a steady-state economy--and not a moment too soon to be getting this discussion going! Every day we inch closer to the limits to growth.
I'd have liked more detail about how to implement many of the ideas; for example, if we wanted to launch a local currency, how would we go about it? If we agreed that we need a public works program like the New Deal's CCC to repair infrastructure and keep people employed, how would we persuad
Highly recommend this book. Some really good thoughts and ideas.

I believe the need for a reframing is here and it's amazing to know that even some of the world's top historical economists predicted the pursuit of growth could only last a couple centuries. We've hit the boundaries our planet can handle--we're there now. Now it's time to stop growing and seek constant levels, turn our attentions to improving quality of life, no longer "growth," especially as blindly and unquestioningly as we are
Nov 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in college for a contemporary economics course and it changed how I look at ecology, systems, the environment, capitalism, and the growth dilemma. The concept of exponential growth is easy to understand in a math class but for whatever reason we humans struggle to apply it our behavior. This book is both sobering and hopeful. The author's do a great job of outlining the climate crisis while offering realistic economic solutions. In order to understand the climate crisis, it is n ...more
Aug 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
The ins and outs of the steady-state economy. Blending economics and the environment. Four main characteristics being: 1)sustainable scale 2)fair distribution 3)efficient allocation 4)high quality of life. Can we as a people make this happen? Not convinced, but still hoping. Simply moving in this direction as a movement by some probably won't be enough. Cynicism aside also discussed was 5 proven ways to 'happiness' this I can relate to: connect, be active, take notice, keep learning, and give. I ...more
John G
May 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
This an excellent book.
I have been critically analysing the current western "economics" paradigm since it is obviously a failure on so many measures.
We have to radically rethink the functioning and role of economics. This redesign of economics is part of the bigger picture of building a sustainable world for our future generations.
"Enough is enough" presents an understandable explanation of the failures of the current economy and then suggests ( with cogent arguments ) an alternative model, w
Rentz Hilyer
Jul 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Dietz and O’Neill explain that numerous indicators show that the earth is suffering the effects of over use by too many people. While we may be barraged by this information on a daily basis, they present it in an especially logical and organized manner, backed up with the latest data.
More importantly, they provide a host of practical real world policy ideas that will help us transition to a steady state economy. The language, data, and policy ideas from Enough Is Enough are now a big part of my
Vivek Vivek
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I liked the book in several ways. It covers a lot of ground and done is fairly convincingly. The book is relatively easy to read (compared to typical academia papers) while also providing rigour through references.

The challenge is that most of us would not accept much of this book and would not follow much of what's argued for in here. The book should add more on Psychology side of humans to further overcome the paradoxes that we are facing: so much known about climate change, inequality, injus
Deborah Schober wren
Dec 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is a comprehensive read on a difficult subject. The authors have done a commendable job of illustrating through examples in our everyday lives the need to transition to a steady state economy while using evidence from studies done on general happiness and quality of life of communities world-wide. It even succeeded in answering those difficult questions of how to transition to a steady state economy so that even the biggest growth junkies may begin to agree.
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