Fleeing Vesuvius

Richard Heinberg Richard Douthwaite Nate Hagens

April 2011

The financial crisis that has blighted the world's richest countries since 2008 was a turning point in human history because it ushered in an era in which economies will tend to shrink rather than grow. Incomes will decline because the natural resources required for growth—particularly oil, the lifeblood of the world economy—can no longer be extracted in growing quantities. Indeed, as this book shows, the financial crash itself was due to an irresistible force—the rising global demand for cheap fossil fuels—meeting an immoveable object: a static supply.

Fleeing Vesuvius is a collection of twenty-seven essays by well-known international authors, all leading thinkers in their fields. Luminaries such as David Korowicz, Richard Douthwaite, Nate Hagens, Dmitry Orlov, and Dan Sullivan weave together the threads of peak oil, resource depletion, economic instability, and climate change and offer far-reaching solutions, including:

  • Concrete strategies for personal adaptation
  • Workable models of self-reliant local communities
  • Frameworks to support international action on financial and economic reform

Timely, practical, and fundamentally optimistic, Fleeing Vesuvius is a must read for anyone concerned with reducing our risk of environmental and societal collapse.

Richard Douthwaite is an economist, journalist, and author specializing in energy, climate, and sustainability issues.

Gillian Fallon is a writer, journalist, and editor with a particular interest in food security and systems thinking.

Foreword by Richard Heinberg.

Feasta is the Foundation for the Economics of Sustainability based in Ireland. Its international membership aims to identify the economic, cultural, social, and environmental characteristics of a truly sustainable society and to suggest ways these could be acquired.


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