The world as we know it needs a new economics. Climate change, financial crisis and out-of-control globalization–all the major problems facing the world have their root in the dominant economic system.
Green economics offers an alternative to mainstream economics, which views society and the ecosystem as subsets of the wider, limitless global economy. Starting with the recognition of planetary limits and an understanding of the importance of using resources wisely, green economics views the economy as nested within society, which itself as part of the greater ecosystem.
This highly readable introduction explains the axioms of green economics including views on taxation, welfare, money, economic development and work through the work of its inspirational figures including Schumacher, Robertson and Douthwaite. It also explores the contributions and insights of schools of thought critical of the dominant neo-classical economic paradigm, including ecofeminism, views from the global South, and the perspective of indigenous peoples. Examples of effective green policies that are already being implemented across the world are presented, as well as policy prescriptions for issues including economic measurement, localization, citizens’ income, taxation and trade.
With climate change now clearly on the horizon, the imperative of sustainability is starting to transform the world's capital markets. Already billions of dollars, pounds, euro and yen are being managed with a view to environmental, social and governance factors. Evolving out of the ethical, socially responsible investment (SRI) and responsible investment waves, sustainable investment involves the conscious integration of extra-financial factors into strategies for generating long-term financial returns. In essence, sustainable investment is fast becoming the smart way of generating long-term returns. With conventional investors now scrambling to factor in issues such as climate change, business ethics and human rights, sustainable investment represents a turning point in the evolution of global finance.