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Promise and shortcomings of a green turn in recent policy responses to the “double crisis”

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  • Bina, Olivia
  • La Camera, Francesco

Abstract

The paper analyses six international-scale responses to the financial and climate change ‘double crisis’ in order to: review how they define problems and solutions, analyse what underpins the policy choices revealed in these responses (the ‘green turn’), reflect on the implications of the proposed solutions in terms of sustainability and global environmental justice, and to suggest three elements for a paradigm shift towards an ‘alternative’ turn embedded in ecological economics theory. The analysis reveals that responses by leading international organisations continue to appeal to the precepts of neoclassical economy. We argue that from an ecological economics perspective, policy responses under the various labels of green economy, green growth, sustainable growth, green new deal, fall well short of what is needed to fight the environmental crisis and rising inequality across and within countries. The idea of justice and equity that underpins the mainstream approach seems inadequate in terms of sustaining our environmental base and global environmental justice. Based on this critical review, we propose an ‘alternative turn’, centred on three elements of a paradigm shift leading to a new economy where the environmental base and global environmental justice are at the centre of the discourse.

Suggested Citation

  • Bina, Olivia & La Camera, Francesco, 2011. "Promise and shortcomings of a green turn in recent policy responses to the “double crisis”," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(12), pages 2308-2316.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:70:y:2011:i:12:p:2308-2316 DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2011.06.021
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Pelletier, Nathan, 2010. "Environmental sustainability as the first principle of distributive justice: Towards an ecological communitarian normative foundation for ecological economics," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(10), pages 1887-1894, August.
    2. Anand, Sudhir & Sen, Amartya, 2000. "Human Development and Economic Sustainability," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 2029-2049, December.
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    4. Clive L Spash & Heinz Schandl, 2009. "Growth, the Environment and Keynes: Reflections on Two Heterodox Schools of Thought," Socio-Economics and the Environment in Discussion (SEED) Working Paper Series 2009-01, CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems.
    5. Timothy W. Luke, 2005. "Neither sustainable nor development: reconsidering sustainability in development," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(4), pages 228-238.
    6. Arrow, Kenneth & Bolin, Bert & Costanza, Robert & Dasgupta, Partha & Folke, Carl & Holling, C.S. & Jansson, Bengt-Owe & Levin, Simon & Mäler, Karl-Göran & Perrings, Charles & Pimentel, David, 1996. "Economic growth, carrying capacity, and the environment," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 1(01), pages 104-110, February.
    7. Costanza, Robert, 1995. "Economic growth, carrying capacity, and the environment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 89-90, November.
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    Cited by:

    1. Anderson, Blake & M'Gonigle, Michael, 2012. "Does ecological economics have a future?," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(C), pages 37-48.
    2. Schaffrin, André & Reibling, Nadine, 2015. "Household energy and climate mitigation policies: Investigating energy practices in the housing sector," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 77(C), pages 1-10.
    3. Ferraro, Emilia & Reid, Louise, 2013. "On sustainability and materiality. Homo faber, a new approach," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 125-131.
    4. Hussin Abdullah & Nor’Aznin Abu Bakar & Mohd Razani Mohd Jali & Fatimah Wati Ibrahim, 2017. "The Current State of Malaysia’s Journey towards a Green Economy: The Perceptions of the Companies on Environmental Efficiency and Sustainability," International Journal of Energy Economics and Policy, Econjournals, vol. 7(1), pages 253-258.
    5. Urhammer, Emil & Røpke, Inge, 2013. "Macroeconomic narratives in a world of crises: An analysis of stories about solving the system crisis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 96(C), pages 62-70.
    6. Bina, Olivia & Vaz, Sofia Guedes, 2011. "Humans, environment and economies: From vicious relationships to virtuous responsibility," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 72(C), pages 170-178.
    7. repec:eee:ecolec:v:142:y:2017:i:c:p:81-90 is not listed on IDEAS
    8. Gendron, Corinne, 2014. "Beyond environmental and ecological economics: Proposal for an economic sociology of the environment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 105(C), pages 240-253.

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