Magazine / People

Alumnus Bryan Welch makes the case for a sustainable world in new book

Bryan Welch (BA English ’81) says people should cut pessimism out of their lives and practice positive visualization to achieve happiness, abundance and sustainability.

Welch says people have a responsibility to create a sustainable world for themselves and for future generations. The key to accomplishing this, he says, is for people to stop focusing on the obstacles to sustainability and instead form a collective, positive vision for the future they want to create. He wrote Beautiful and Abundant: Building the World We Want (B&A Books, 2010) to spread this message.

Welch grew up on a farm in New Mexico, where he developed an emotional bond with nature and an intuitive understanding of the relationships among people, plants and animals.

Welch, who has a master’s degree in media policy and management from Harvard, now lives on a farm in Lawrence, Kan., and runs Ogden Publications, which publishes magazines that focus on sustainable and rural lifestyles, including Mother Earth News, Natural Home and Garden and Utne Reader.

Beautiful and Abundant presents steps people can take to engage in innovative and positive change in their own lives.

“Our negativity has prevented our ideas from catching on,” Welch writes. “If we want to involve people in the invention of a sustainable, prosperous future, we need a different approach.”

He encourages businesses to practice innovation and conservation to achieve a balance between profitability and a sustainable business model. The book includes case studies of companies like Google that have used innovation to create success and sustainability.

Welch also argues that humanity needs to practice population control to conserve natural resources and prevent detrimental effects to the Earth.

“I want to live in a world where every human being has access to clean water, healthy food and unspoiled nature,” he writes. “When we have a vision of a world where the air and water are clean, where the forests and prairies are healthy, then economic and political obstacles are reduced in size. Without innovation and the dynamic change it brings, we’ll continue on our present path toward environmental crisis.”


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