Search the Site
The Lease Society
The concept of a ‘lease society’ provides a social, sustainable and functional free-market model that frees people from the shackles of ownership, writes Judith Merkies in the April issue of Parliament Magazine.
The key idea is to shift to a dematerialised society, a society where we consume less, enjoy more and guard our scarce raw materials more closely. A ‘lease society’ model should be introduced, in which consumers lease instead of purchase products so that emphasis is not put on the physical good, but on its performance. For instance, rather than buying a lamp, you lease the service ‘light’ and rather than buying a television, you lease ‘television watching hours’.
Meanwhile producers retain the ownership of their products, which extends their responsibility over the product with regard to its full lifecycle. Replacing, repairing and removing goods will be on the producer’s account - so that employment shifts to rendering these services. Furthermore, the producer will understand that expenses are minimised when a product delivers a service for its entire leasing period. This creates an economic incentive to make goods durable and recyclable for fully closed supply loops – rather than relentlessly launching impermanent devices made of scarce and environment-damaging virgin raw materials.
Judith Merkies is a member of parliament’s industry, research and energy committee
FOR THE FULL ARTICLE SEE: http://www.theparliament.com/digimag/issue346