"Eliminating water shortages depends on a global attempt to raise water productivity similar to the effort launched a half-century ago to raise land productivity, an initiative that has nearly tripled the world grain yield per hectare." –Lester R. Brown, World Facing Huge New Challenge on Food Front in Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization
The Earth Policy Institute (EPI) was founded in 2001 by Lester Brown, the founder and former president of the Worldwatch Institute, to provide a plan of a sustainable future along with a roadmap of how to get from here to there. EPI works at the global level simply because no country can fully implement a Plan B economy in isolation. When its founder retired on June 30, 2015, the Institute was dissolved.
EPI’s goals were (1) to provide a global plan (Plan B) for moving the world onto an environmentally and economically sustainable path, (2) to provide examples demonstrating how the plan would work, and (3) to keep the media, policymakers, academics, environmentalists, and other decision-makers focused on the process of building a Plan B economy.
People change behavior either in response to new information or new experiences. Earth Policy Institute disseminated new information to guide the process of change via its plan of a sustainable future as outlined in its Updates, Indicators, and books, the most recent of which was The Great Transition: Shifting from Fossil Fuels to Solar and Wind Energy.
EPI published its basic research in book form simply because there is a worldwide network of book publishers in all the major languages, a network that does not exist for monographs or magazines. Having books available in the world’s leading languages broadens the dissemination of its research findings. During its 14 years of existence, the Institute published eleven books.
Updates, Indicators, Data Highlights, and Book Bytes
Plan B Updates are original, four-page analyses of environmental issues ranging from worldwide advances in renewable energy to deaths from heat waves to new flows of environmental refugees.
Eco-Economy Indicators consist of the 12 trends EPI uses to measure progress toward building a Plan B world.
Book Bytes are highlights and adaptations from EPI's books and research.
Data Highlights focus on specific indicators or environmental issues to spotlight the vast amount of data compiled at Earth Policy Institute.
All were released electronically on EPI’s listserv and are posted on its website along with supporting data and sources for additional information.