Quoted in The Little Green & White book:
The vision of a nonviolent society inspires people from across narrow divides and boundaries to sense the planet as being one family. If more and more people from across the globe develop a firm faith in nonviolence, then most urgent issues can be sorted out in peaceful and just ways.
To make the system accountable, civil society needs to press for a form of development that promotes happiness and well-being for all, rather than wealth for the few. It is a form of development that places the poor and the marginalized at the centre. Lasting protection of the planet requires a participatory development wherein all people are included.
Since 2013, Jai Jagat has been consulting with other grassroots movements and civil society organizations in many countries on the kinds of actions that would bring the attention of global institutions to the ‘root causes’ of poverty and conflict. An example of such interaction is of indigenous populations that are being dispossessed of their forest lands by richer and appropriating interests. Land grabbing increases economic inequality and creates social conflict, but what is more subtle is the risk of environmental destruction and climate crisis. Indigenous people’s basic needs are not counter to environmental concerns; rather they are able to find sustainable solutions to safeguard the forests. This is an example of how forest-dependent communities can help to protect the earth’s resources, both for mitigating climate change and maintaining peace.
Sustainable development Goals (SDGs) Agenda 2030
The pursuance of limitless growth at all costs is unsustainable on a planet of finite resources. We need a different model of development: a model that respects planetary boundaries and acknowledges the interdependence of humans with other species and with nature, and that does not confuse essential needs with infinite wants. The experience of the poor is essential to design such an alternative. They are expert in doing more with less, in building on social innovations, and in relying on solidarity and collaboration, not violence and competition, in achieving our collective aims.
Olivier de Schutter (2018): Happiness within Boundaries. Declaration produced for Jai Jagat.