Consider Costa Rica, for example. Costa Rica’s per capita consumption is just over the sustainable level, yet they have some of the highest human development indicators in the world. Costa Ricans can expect to live longer than Americans, and with a level of well-being and life satisfaction that rivals even Scandinavian countries. In this sense, Costa Rica is one of the most efficient economies on Earth: it delivers high levels of human well-being with relatively little ecological pressure. We have been thinking about development all wrong. We have been holding countries such as the US and Sweden up as our goal, when we should have been paying attention to those such as Costa Rica.
The great challenge of the 21st century is learning to consume less. This is how we can do it (cache)
I’m eager to find more local places looking for efficiency rather than blind consumption a.k.a. “smart” places. Any other suggestions?
Better if the scale is close to a medium-sized city.