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Al Bartlett Week – Day 5

Today, on the last day of Al Bartlett Week, I have 3 special clips of Al to share. In the first we get to enjoy Al’s musings about the late Julian Simon. Simon was in many ways Lex Luther to the sustainability Superman of Al Bartlett (and Paul Ehrlich). Al enjoys pointing out Simon’s innumeracy. Al was fond of remarking on the fact that so many of us are “innumerate,” the mathematical equivalent of illiterate. I thought perhaps he’d made up the word, but no, it’s in the dictionary.

Dave Gardner honors Al Bartlett at Colorado premiere of GrowthBusters In the second clip he discusses the First Law of Sustainability. Al wrote a series of Laws Relating to Sustainability. I’ve often wondered why these aren’t shared more widely and posted on bulletin boards everywhere. Maybe now they will be.

The third clip is rather bittersweet, because Al talks about growth as a cancer, and cancer is what took his life.

I’m not quite out of great Al Bartlett video clips, so I’ll set another day sometime in October to share a few more. We’ve shared 16 clips this week. Clearly my 2005 interview with Al covered a lot of very interesting ground. Because of that, and to honor the late professor, Lynsey and I decided we should make Al Bartlett the premiere episode of the TV series we’re developing, Conversation Earth. I’m excited about this series because it will give the public a chance to dig deeper into sustainability issues with great minds like Al Bartlett. You can get a taste of the series here.

Al Bartlett on Julian Simon

Al Bartlett – First Law of Sustainability

Al Bartlett – You Have a Brisk Cancer

To participate in Al Bartlett Week and avoid missing out, subscribe to this blog, join the event page, and/or follow us on Twitter. Add your comments. I look forward to reading and sharing your thoughts throughout the week!

Dave Gardner
Filmmaker & GrowthBuster

Dave Gardner directed the documentary, GrowthBusters: Hooked on Growth. He blogs at and is a founder and contributor to

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