Small Planet Resources

I begin this course by paying tribute to the Whistle-blowers (pptx, 1435 K) who first identified, and tried to deal with, the tension between the environment and the economy. Then I move on to explore some useful concepts and some history of the place of the Environment-economy tension (pptx, 1318 K) in economic thought.

The next two sessions introduce the approaches to the environment taken by the Neoclassical (pptx, 279 K) and Environmental (ppt, 4091 K)economists.

Environmental economists believe in the power and benign authority of the market system. For them, the reason we are destroying the environment (which, unlike some of their neoclassical colleagues, they take seriously), is that it is not clear who owns it. If clear property rights could be established, and what they call 'eco-system services' could be bought and sold, the environment would be protected. Their solution to the environment-economy tension is a policy of .Creating New Markets (pptx, 2793 K)

Once we have dealt with the conventional approaches to the economics of the environment we move on to two sessions focusing on the approach of the ecological economists. The first is an introduction to Ecological Economics (ppt, 1189 K), while the second deals with the more abstract ideas of systems thinking and entropy.

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