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A new freely downloadable book

Today the world is facing several threats, and to avoid them we need to act. The greatest threats are catastrophic climate change and thermonuclear war, but a large-scale global famine also has to be considered.

I would like to announce the publication of a new book, in which these problems are discussed The book may be downloaded and circulated free of charge from the following link:

Here are the great tasks that challenge us today:

We need a steady-state economic system

Perpetual growth of anything physical on a finite planet is a logical impossibility.  Economic growth is already destroying the global environment.

We must restore democracy

In many countries, democracy has been replaced by oligarchy. Governmental secrecy means that the people have no control of what their governments are doing. We need to restore democracy in our own countries, but we must not interfere in the internal affairs of nations other than our own.

We must decrease economic inequality

We must act to decrease economic inequality, both between nations, and within nations. Countries with more equality are demonstrably happier, and with fewer social problems than nations where inequality is greater.

We must break the power of corporate greed

As Professor Noam Chomsky has pointed out, greed and lack of ethics are built into the structure of corporations. By law, the Chief Executive Officer of a corporation must be entirely motivated by the collective greed of the stockholders. He must optomize profits. If the CEO abandons this single-minded chase after corporate profits for ethical reasons, or for the sake of humanity or the biosphere  or the future, he must, by law, be fired and replaced.

We must leave fossil fuels in the ground

The threat of catastrophic climate change requires prompt and dedicated action by the global community. Unless we very quickly make the transition from fossil fuels to 100 % renewable energy, we will reach tipping points, after which uncontrollable feedback loops will take over.

We must stabilize and ultimately reduce global population

The population of humans will soon exceed the carrying capacity of the global environment, increasing the probability of a large-scale famine. Education of women and higher status for women are vitally important steps, not only for their own sake, but also because these reforms have shown themselves to be important steps towards population stabilization.

We must eliminate the institution of war

In an era of all-destroying thermonuclear weapons, war has become a dangerous anachronism. Today the world spends roughly two trillion dollars every year on armaments. This almost unimaginably enormous sum could solve many of our pressing problems if it were used constructively. Instead, the weapons purchaced with this money endanger the lives of every person on the planet.

We need a world federation

The present United Nations is a confederation, rather than a federation, and thus it is too weak to prevent wars.  The present UN tries to control its member states by means of economic sanctoins, but these sanctions are neither just nor effective, since they make the poorest citizens of the targeted nation suffer, rather than the guilty leaders. By contrast, a federation has the poer to make laws that are binfing on individuals, even if they are heads of the member states.  Historically, federations have been very successful. A number of large nations today (for example the United States, Russia, Germany and Australia) have federal governments. The European Union is also a federation.

We need new ethics to match our new technology

On our small but beautiful earth, made small by technology, made beautiful by nature, there is room for one group only: the family of humankind.


PDF downlaod

Other books and articles about  global problems are on these links

I hope that you will circulate the links in this article to friends and contacts who might be interested.

John Scales Avery is a theoretical chemist at the University of Copenhagen. He is noted for his books and research publications in quantum chemistry, thermodynamics, evolution, and history of science. His 2003 book Information Theory and Evolution set forth the view that the phenomenon of life, including its origin, evolution, as well as human cultural evolution, has its background situated in the fields of thermodynamics, statistical mechanics, and information theory. Since 1990 he has been the Chairman of the Danish National Group of Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs. Between 2004 and 2015 he also served as Chairman of the Danish Peace Academy. He founded the Journal of Bioenergetics and Biomembranes, and was for many years its Managing Editor. He also served as Technical Advisor to the World Health Organization, Regional Office for Europe (19881997). He can be reached at To know more about his works visit this link.

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