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Environment Ch 5

by: Lauren Vagnoni

Environment Ch 5 ENVIR 101 002

Lauren Vagnoni
GPA 4.0
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About this Document

Chapter 5 is covered in the first exam
Intro to Environment
Daniel Taylor Brantley (P)
Class Notes




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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lauren Vagnoni on Tuesday February 2, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ENVIR 101 002 at University of South Carolina taught by Daniel Taylor Brantley (P) in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 43 views. For similar materials see Intro to Environment in Art at University of South Carolina.


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Date Created: 02/02/16
Chapter 5 Lecture How we can assign monetary value to ecosystem goods and services  Surveys determine how much people are willing to pay to protect or restore a resource  Measure the money, time, or effort expended to travel to parks for recreation  Compare housing prices in different areas to infer the dollar value of landscapes, views, and peace and quiet.  Calculate the cost to restore natural systems, replace systems with technology, or clean up pollution The Value of the world’s ecosystem services  Earth’s economic value of 17 ecosystem services each year equals $143 trillion in 2014 dollars o This is more than the GDP of all nations combine We can Measure progress with full cost accounting  Gross Domestic Product (GDP) o This monetary value of final goods and services produced each year o Used for decades to assess each nation’s economy o Fails to account for nonmarket values o Includes desirable and undesirable activity  GDP can rise as a result of crime, war, and pollution, and natural disasters  Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI) o Indicators that distinguish between desirable and undesirable economic activity o Conventional economic activity plus positive nonmonetary contributions such as volunteering and parenting o Negative impacts such as crime and pollution are subtracted  GPI can differ greatly from GDP Markets can fail  Market failure occurs when markets ignore o The environments positive impacts on economics (ecosystem services) o External costs  Government intervention counters market failure through o Laws and regs o Taxing harmful activities o Designing economic incentives to promote fairness, conservation, and sustainability Environmental Policy  Once a society agrees that a problem exists, it may persuade its leaders to solve it through policy  Policy o A formal set of general plans and principles to address problems and guide decision making  Public policy o Policy made by governments at local, state, federal, or international level  Environmental policy o Pertains to human interactions with the environment o Regulates resource use or reduces pollution to promote human welfare and protect resources Policy addresses environmental problems  Science, ethics, and economics help formulate policy o Science is where policy stems from o Science provides information and analysis o Ethics and economics clarify how society can address problems o Government interacts with citizens, organizations, and the private sector  Today’s time provides awareness that wasn’t there even just 20 years ago Environmental policy addresses issues of fairness and resource use  Capitalist markets are driven by short-term profit o Not long-term social or environmental stability o Little incentive to minimize impacts o Market failure justifies government intervention  Reasons for governments to intervene in market o Provide social services  National defense, health care, education o Provide social services  National defense, health care, education o Provide “safety nets”  For elderly, the poor, victims of natural disasters o Elimincate unfair advantages held by single buys/sellers o Manage publicly held resources o Minimize pollution and threats to health and quality of life  Environmental policy tries to: o Protect people’s health o Safeguard environmental quality and conserve o Equity or fairness in resource use  Free Riders o People are tempted to cheat and not participate in sacrificing to protect the environment o “Free Ride”= avoiding sacrifices made by others o Private voluntary efforts are less effective than public policies, where everyone sacrifices  Environmental policies also promote fairness by dealing with external costs o Policies ensure that parties do not use resources in ways that harm others Various factors can obstruct environmental policy  Perception that environmental protection means economic sacrifice  Environmental policies reflect long-term trends, but short- term interests are often viewed as more important  Wealth and power often exert disproportionate influence over policymakers Science informs policy but is sometimes disregarded  A nation’s strength depends on proper use of science o Gov use tax money to fund research  Sometimes policymakers let ideology determine policy o Politicians ignore scientist and mislead the public o Gov scientists have had their work censored, suppressed, or edited and their jobs threatened o Unqualified people are put into powerful positions  Scientifically literate citizens must ensure that our government uses proper use of science U.S. Environmental Law and Policy


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