Economic growth and environment
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The report of the Club of Rome was titled "The Limits to Growth". It mentioned the problems of the depletion of limited resources or the ad hoc nature of some violations and analyzes the logic of resource conservation to strive for zero growth. This report draws up a confrontation between economic growth and the environment. The creation of a neologism of the term "environment" also coincides with the onset of anxiety-related consequences of the development of industrial society on the environment.
The economic and financial dictionary defines the term as "all components of the environment where man lives." This conflicting relationship between economic growth and environmental conditions therefore results from the awareness of the destruction and overexploitation of resources by renewable or non-economic activity of man, their exhaustion and a considerable production of waste.
Thus, as early as 1920, Pigou paved the way for the analysis of pollution problems. In 1960, the economic environment emerged as an original disciplinary field. Economists attempted to provide prescriptive answers to the problems of environmental management. Meanwhile, many global summits, conferences and treaties have addressed this issue of the environment such as the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 and the Johannesburg World Summit in 2002 on sustainable development. However, the economic argument is often put forward to delay or to question the appropriateness of programs to reduce pollution.
Thus, the absence of the U.S. representatives in Johannesburg and their rejection of the Kyoto Protocol indicate the foremost concern for the U.S. to lose the status of an economic superpower through environmental measures. As a result, do economic growth and environment live as two antagonistic concepts and are they therefore incompatible? Should one condemn growth for the sake of environmental preservation as stated in the Club of Rome? Is there a real brake on economic growth as the Americans thinks or should one try to combine them effectively as two concepts of an economic perspective?
By the 1960s, Bertrand de Jouvenel stressed the need to reconcile the progress of production and responsibility for resource exploitation of nature, because "our taxes can not grow to infinity" and our companies "by their number and power of process agents are unprecedented." It calls for further consumption and economic management. Indeed, much of the environmental degradation as global warming, but also the exploitation of exhaustible natural resources (oil, coal ) or renewable behaviors are due to consumption and production in industrialized countries.
Thus, economic growth can be described as a process of gradual accumulation of wealth resulting in progressive accumulation of hazardous substances to the natural environment and human health. Economic growth then accelerates the depletion of non renewable resources of the planet and because of this exhaustion there is a vector for the spread of pollution by a small or large scale.
Tags: Economic growth; effect on the environment; Kyoto Protocol; programs to reduce pollution; environmental degradation;