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Efficient nonanthropocentric nature protection

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  • Thomas Eichner

    ()

  • Rüdiger Pethig

    ()

Abstract

This paper analyzes nature protection by a social planner under different ‘utilitarian’ social welfare functions. For that purpose we construct an integrated model of the economy and the ecosystem with explicit consideration of nonhuman species and with competition between human and nonhuman species for land and prey biomass. We characterize and compare the efficient allocations when social welfare is anthropocentric (only consumers have positive welfare weights), and when social welfare is nonanthropocentric (all species have positive welfare weights). Not surprisingly, biocentric social welfare calls for suspending all economic activities. It is more important, however, that both anthropocentrism and nonanthropocentrism make the case for nature protection through different channels. Our analysis suggests that one may dispense with the concept of nonanthropocentric social welfare provided that in the anthropocentric framework the consumers’ intrinsic valuation of nature is properly accounted for.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s00355-005-0029-3
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Social Choice and Welfare.

Volume (Year): 26 (2006)
Issue (Month): 1 (January)
Pages: 47-74

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Handle: RePEc:spr:sochwe:v:26:y:2006:i:1:p:47-74

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  1. Yew-Kwang Ng, 1999. "Utility, informed preference, or happiness: Following Harsanyi's argument to its logical conclusion," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 16(2), pages 197-216.
  2. Thomas Eichner & Rüdiger Pethig, 2003. "A Microfoundation of Predator-Prey Dynamics," CESifo Working Paper Series 950, CESifo Group Munich.
  3. Olof Johansson-Stenman, 1998. "The Importance of Ethics in Environmental Economics with a Focus on Existence Values," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 11(3), pages 429-442, April.
  4. Yew-Kwang Ng, 2003. "From preference to happiness: Towards a more complete welfare economics," Social Choice and Welfare, Springer, vol. 20(2), pages 307-350, March.
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Cited by:
  1. Aronsson, Thomas & Johansson-Stenman, Olof, 2011. "Animal Welfare and Social Decisions," Working Papers in Economics 485, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  2. Thomas Eichner & Rüdiger Pethig, 2005. "Ecosystem and Economy: An Integrated Dynamic General Equilibrium Approach," Journal of Economics, Springer, vol. 85(3), pages 213-249, 09.
  3. Thomas Eichner & Rüdiger Pethig, 2007. "Pricing the Ecosystem and Taxing Ecosystem Services: A General Equilibrium Approach," CESifo Working Paper Series 1991, CESifo Group Munich.

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