Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Cuba and Sustainability

Once again about Cuba. I am intrigued by Cuba. It is certainly a fascinating place. Not without mistakes and problems, that is for sure. Still, they are doing many things right. New Scientist journal states: "Only one country, Cuba, is developing sustainably, according to a new report - and even that is due to an oil embargo imposed upon it". The article is here but not free. The New Scientist investigated the living conditions and ecological footprints of 93 countries. Upon this research it derived a chart with HDI (Human Development Index = quality of life) on the vertical axis and the ecological footprint (how many plants would be necessary according to the resource consumption of the given life style). Cuba achieved an 0.82 on the HDI scale and if everyone would live like Cuba we would need only 0.8 planets, i.e. Cuba is sustainable. The US on the other hand has a 0.98 on the HDI scale, but if everyone lived like the US we would need more than 5 planets, i.e. the US is a long long way off sustainability. The chart (in Spanish) can be found here.

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