About Us


Our mission is to sustain people and wild places.


We envision a world where: 

  • people strive to empower, not seize power;
  • all life on Earth has the right to flourish;
  • progress is based on genuine wellbeing—not increasing consumption;
  • the great gap between rich and poor is narrowed, not widened;
  • access to education, health care, and meaningful work is available to every person;
  • every child is wanted, and families are created by choice—not chance or coercion;
  • human numbers exist in balance with other species, and with the environment and natural resources that sustain us all.


The future is no longer in the future, but here and now. Second by second it is upon us, and every moment in our lives is a fresh beginning. It is the people who are living through the upheaval who will decide how society moves forward:

  • Into another few years of Economic Growth Over All Else until the next wave of pandemic hits and we all run indoors again? 
  • Or a recognition that our slowing down, our under-consuming, our focus on local life, may be a very good thing.  

Most of us are enjoying the clean air and quiet that the “stay at home” orders have brought us. We are enjoying the songs of birds and the re-emergence of wild animals. But we do not enjoy the loneliness, the limitations, and the loss of life and work. 

How can we move from being Economic Person to Whole Person? That is going to take imagination, hard thinking, and courage to test the unknown. If we want some hard thinking done, we must think for ourselves, or others will do the thinking—and decision-making—for us.  

The time has come to set our feet upon the road to sustainability. The task is urgent; we must not push it into the future; we must not leave it to others: we must do it ourselves, and we must begin here and now.

BLUE PLANET UNITED resolves to bring the theory of sustainability down from the clouds of vision into the community of local and personal action. We will provide action ideas that span all facets of human endeavor.


Blue Planet United is an official California tax exempt educational corporation with federal 501(C)(3) status. Oversight of Blue Planet United and its projects is provided by a Board of Trustees. Day-to-day operation and coordination is in the hands of the Executive Director. 

Blue Planet United was founded in 1994 by Marilyn Hempel to educate Americans about the important linkage between overpopulation, overconsumption, instability, and sustainability. 

From 1995 to 2015, a major component of our educational effort was the production and distribution of the Population Press, became the only U. S. population news-journal. We sponsored journalists going to the ICPD in Cairo in 1994, and to the Fourth World Conference on Women in Bejing in 1995. The Population Press work culminated in the book, Facing the Population Challenge: Wisdom from the Elders. The book is available on Amazon.  

In 2007, Blue Planet United folded Blue Planet Films (created by Monty Hempel) into its operations. Between 2007 and 2019, we produced more than 20 films, helping people make the connection between population stabilization, sustainable consumption, and the preservation of wild landscapes and seascapes. In 2019 Monty Hempel died suddenly. His films are being used in college and university environmental studies classrooms, and will be available free to all on YouTube.

For more than 25 years, Blue Planet United has produced and distributed thousands of “how to live sustainably” films, books, brochures, posters, and action cards for teachers, students, and the general public.