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

Listed author(s):
  • Bina, Olivia
  • La Camera, Francesco
Registered author(s):

    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.

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    File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0921800911002680
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    Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Ecological Economics.

    Volume (Year): 70 (2011)
    Issue (Month): 12 ()
    Pages: 2308-2316

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    Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:70:y:2011:i:12:p:2308-2316
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2011.06.021
    Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/ecolecon

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    1. Anand, Sudhir & Sen, Amartya, 2000. "Human Development and Economic Sustainability," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 2029-2049, December.
    2. 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.
    3. Timothy W. Luke, 2005. "Neither sustainable nor development: reconsidering sustainability in development," Sustainable Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(4), pages 228-238.
    4. 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.
    5. 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.
    6. Martínez-Alier, Joan & Pascual, Unai & Vivien, Franck-Dominique & Zaccai, Edwin, 2010. "Sustainable de-growth: Mapping the context, criticisms and future prospects of an emergent paradigm," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(9), pages 1741-1747, July.
    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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