Welcome To BRSI

For centuries humans have recognized that the Earth’s resources are finite and their use has to be managed to provide for both current and future generations. There are those who have predicted catastrophe because of global society’s unwillingness to address this issue. Others point to data showing that more people are living better lives than ever before.

We at BRSI recognize that both positions are true. To date human ingenuity has allowed the world to avoid the worst consequences of unsustainable resource use, usually by exploiting previously unused resources: coal replaced wood, only to be replaced by oil and natural gas. We also recognize that the unlimited use of the Earth’s resources cannot continue indefinitely. The human ingenuity that has been so effective at expanding the world’s resource base now needs to be redirected to ensuring that it is not exhausted, and the environmental consequences of unsustainable resource use must be controlled and reversed.

BRSI seeks to contribute to this redirection of human ingenuity by providing practical tools for policymakers, educators, community activists, and entrepreneurs. Western North Carolina offers an excellent “green laboratory” for this effort. Our region has extraordinary human and natural resources, and is projected to grow significantly over the next few decades. We can make that growth more sustainable and act as a model for other regions by applying hard science and advanced economic thinking, and encouraging fresh ideas in government and industry. Our slogan is Knowledge Into Action. We will be successful only when the tools we develop are used and result in more sustainable use of the Earth’s resources.