Valuing the Future: Economic Theory and Sustainability (Economics for a Sustainable Earth)

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9780231113069: Valuing the Future: Economic Theory and Sustainability (Economics for a Sustainable Earth)

Careful, rigorous analyses such as those conducted in this book should help focus the debate about the perplexing and consequential issues that fall under the rubric of sustainability.

Vom Verlag:

With issues like global warming and the loss of biodiversity becoming increasingly important to policymakers and scientists worldwide, the issue of sustainability cannot be ignored. Sustainable management of the biosphere has been the subject of much attention among ecologists, environmental engineers and other members of the scientific community. Yet although these issues are clearly rooted in economic behaviour and organization, the question of sustainability is not one that has been addressed directly by economists. This text presents a framework for understanding the Earth's future from an economic perspective. Geoffrey Heal's model begins with a reconciliation of the economist's and environmentalist's time horizon: in economics, discussions of "the long run" generally refer to a much shorter timeline than do those of the earth sciences. The work shows the benefits of viewing the environment as an economic asset that should be understood as part of a nation's income and explains how this approach can lead to more conservative patterns of resource use. It also provides complete mathematical templates for the valuation of a depletable stock and of renewable resources, the proper calculation of national income and the conduct of cost-benefit analysis.

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