Can Our Economy Grow Forever?, 49°

John P. 199°

Over the last twenty years the government where I live (Ireland) has put a lot of emphasis on growing our economy. The economy has grown, but has it benefited the average person? Yes, people have more money, bigger houses and more stuff. However, they also have a lot more stress and I would argue a lower quality of life in some cases.

Twenty years ago I used to walk, or cycle to work. Now, I take a bus or train journey that lasts nearly two hours each way. I work longer hours and have more bills.

With new markets emerging around the world there are also new economies. With all of these economies growing can our economy grow forever?

43 replies

Tom Rand 140°

See for my view!
Short answer - not if by 'economy' you mean the real economic growth in the developing world that is the neocon promise - more planes, tuna and air-conditioners for all.

Written in August 2008

Barbara M. 149°

Hi All,

John P, I understand exactly where you are coming from with your initial post. I’m from Ireland too and became completely disenchanted with the focus on money and possessions and the narrow-minded notion of “success” being a large salary and a couple of fancy cars. I left my job and possessions and went travelling around the world for a few years, working and volunteering in various continents.

Travelling wiped me of all my stresses. When you spend some time living in a jungle in Borneo you quickly realise the importance of cars and televisions in life.

On my travels I came across New Zealand…and I haven’t left since :o) I seem to have found my utopia and it offers all the lifestyle choices you are craving.

I spend my week working in a large corporation (gasp!) but it affords me the ability to make environmental and sustainability changes within the corporation.

NZ still honours many of the values which used to be important in Ireland – work-life balance, focus on mental-wellbeing, access to natural resources. I spend approx one weekend every two months tramping/hiking in the wilderness, giving me two days away from the grid, eating food caught/killed/harvested by my friends and listening to nothing but the birds in the trees and my friends’ chatter.

To achieve a better quality of life, seek your own utopia!

P.S. I don’t work for the NZ tourist board ;oP

Written in August 2008

1 person thinks this is a cool reply

Charles M. 110°

Hey Barbara M: Please don't blow our secret. NZ would really suck if everyone moved here :-).

I too came from elsewhere. Sure, NZ is not perfect by any means, but at least people are thinking about stuff with relatively little damage done thus far (well compared to many places anyway).

When I'm overseas I always carry a golf-ball sized chunk of pumice that I found on a North Island beach many years ago. It is reassuring to reach into my pocket and feel a bit of NZ. I also like to think that as the bits rub off the pumice it leaves a trail of NZ covering the places I go to.

Written in August 2008

John P. 199°

Hi Barbara M.

Where abouts are you from exactly. I'm originally from the wee county Lú, but I'm an adopted Munster man now having married into a West Limerick/North Kerry clan.

I've thought about emigrating many times and New Zealand would be top of my list. I've got lots of family and friends already there.

I still hope that Ireland can move towards a more sustainable model though.

Charles M. I really like the idea of leaving a bit of New Zealand everywhere you go.

I think you guys are bringing a bit of all that's good about New Zealand to the rest of the world right here on Celsias.

Written in August 2008

John P. 199°

Thanks to C Robb W. for the action

and all the members who contributed to this discussion.

Written in September 2008

Other part of growth is destruction. Nothing can grow forever. Time will reverse and we have to pay for the damage of the nature. Envirionment is changing world wide. If environment does not support us, how our economy will grow?

Written in September 2010

Nice discussion from you guys thanks about sharing about economy


Written in October 2010

An interesting discussion indeed.
Agrion is hosting an upcoming event entitled, Macrotrends in Critical Resources & Vital Energy Assets: Making Money and Leaving a Legacy on April 17, 2012 in New York City. Together with a panel of experts, audience members will participate in a lively discussion on the subject. Check it out here:

Written in March 2012

yes why not. its possible definitely


Written in September 2012

Steve B. 10°

Economic growth is an increase in the production and consumption of goods and services.Every economy is growing, though it has a certain impact on people staying there. Income is rising,so also the expenditure.

Written in April 2013

Sady M.

thanks for your economic post!!!!!!!!!!

Written in February 2014

The economy is a division of the ecosystems that hold it. This detail is ignored in business and economics textbooks, where the ecosystem is viewed as a subsystem of the economy, and the economy itself is portrayed as a round flow of money among firms and households. The key point is that the economy tends to rise as an integrated whole. More manufacturing and more services requires more farming and extractive surplus.
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Written in March 2015

Hery O. 15°

almost the same as mine, but the difference is I can not grow and strive because of limited funds but it is up to me to write about some of the articles.
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Written in May 2015

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