ConsumerismEconomicsSociety

The Story of Stuff

  • Did you know that the average house size in the United States is double what it was in the 1970s? I wonder if it isn’t partly because we need space for all of our stuff?
  • Did you know that in the U.S. national happiness peaked sometime in the1950s, even though we consume twice as much as we did fifty years ago? All of our stuff doesn’t seem to have helped here.
  • Did you know that in the past three decades, one-third of the planet’s natural resources base have been consumed to make all of our stuff?
  • Did you know that we each see more advertisements in one year than people 50 years ago saw in a lifetime?
  • Did you know that for every garbage can of waste you put out on the curb, 70 garbage cans of waste were made upstream to make the junk in that one garbage can you put out on the curb?
  • Did you know that 40% of U.S. waterways are now undrinkable, and that to make all of our stuff we now have over 100,000 synthetic chemicals in commerce today — only a handful of which have even been tested for human health impacts and NONE have been tested for synergistic health impacts? (source)

Today I’d like to introduce you to the story of stuff….

Or watch a higher resolution version at storyofstuff.com!

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One Comment

  1. Thanx Craig. The Story of Stuff is a great way of presenting a difficult topic that questions our largely consumer driven global culture. I use it every semester in the classroom and surprisingly students respond very well to it. Gotta get this stuff into mainstream education, kinda fast I would think. Cheers.

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