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Green Keynesianism: Beyond Standard Growth Paradigms

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  • Jonathan M. Harris

Abstract

In the wake of the global financial crisis, Keynesianism has had something of a revival. In practice, governments have turned to Keynesian policy measures to avert economic collapse. In the theoretical area, mainstream economists have started to give grudging attention to Keynesian perspectives previously dismissed in favor of New Classical theories. This theoretical and practical shift is taking place at the same time that environmental issues, in particular global climate change, are compelling attention to alternative development paths. Significant potential now exists for “Green Keynesianism” -- combining Keynesian fiscal policies with environmental goals. But there are also tensions between the two perspectives of Keynesianism and ecological economics. Traditional Keynesianism is growth-oriented, while ecological economics stresses limits to growth. Expansionary policies needed to deal with recession may be in conflict with goals of reducing resource and energy use and carbon emissions. In addition, long-term deficit and debt problems pose a threat to implementation of expansionary fiscal policies. This paper explores the possibilities for Green Keynesianism in theory and practice, and suggests that these apparent contradictions can be resolved, and that Green Keynesian policies offer a solution to both economic stagnation and global environmental threats.

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Paper provided by GDAE, Tufts University in its series GDAE Working Papers with number 13-02.

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Date of creation: Feb 2013
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Handle: RePEc:dae:daepap:13-02

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  1. Jonathan M. Harris, . "10-05 "The Macroeconomics of Development without Throughput Growth"," GDAE Working Papers 10-05, GDAE, Tufts University.
  2. Jonathan Harris, . "08-02 "Ecological Macroeconomics: Consumption, Investment, and Climate Change"," GDAE Working Papers 08-02, GDAE, Tufts University.
  3. Ackerman, Frank & Stanton, Elizabeth A., 2011. "Climate risks and carbon prices: Revising the social cost of carbon," Economics Discussion Papers 2011-40, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  4. Frank Ackerman & Elizabeth A. Stanton, 2013. "Climate Impacts on Agriculture: A Challenge to Complacency?," GDAE Working Papers 13-01, GDAE, Tufts University.
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Cited by:
  1. Jonathan M. Harris, 2013. "Population, Resources, and Energy in the Global Economy: A Vindication of Herman Daly's Vision," GDAE Working Papers 13-03, GDAE, Tufts University.

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