What is the most desirable level of pollution?

2096 mots 9 pages
What is the most desirable level of pollution?

The American economist Simon Kuznets thought that the economic growth contributed to increase social inequalities and ecological damages at first, but that then it created the conditions of a continuous social and environmental progress. An optimism contradicted by the facts for twenty years. Already, in 1972, in a report being entitled The Limits to Growth, the Club of Rome questioned, for the first time, the virtues of the growth. This study carried out by researchers Massachusetts Institute of Technology underlines the ecological dangers of the economic and demographic growth which knows then the world and predicts a shortage of energy resources and consequences of the industrial development on the environment. This conflicting relation between economic growth and state of the environment thus results from the awareness of the destruction and the overexploitation of the renewable resources by the economic activity of the man, their exhaustion in the second case and a considerable production of waste. So, from the 1920s, Pigou, of the school of Cambridge, opens the way of the analysis of the problems of pollution and in the 1960s appears the economy of the environment which appears as an original disciplinary field: the economists are going to try to bring normative answers to the problems of the management of the environment. At the same time, numerous world summits, conference and treaties bent over this question of the environment such as the Kyoto protocol in 1997 or the world summit of Johannesburg in 2002 on the sustainable development. However, the economic argument is often advanced to delay or to question the opportunity of the programs of reduction of the pollution. So, the absence of American representatives in Johannesburg or still their refusal of the Kyoto protocol indicates above all the fear for the United States to lose, through ecological measures, their economic superpower. Therefore, economic

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