Green economics: The other side of the grass
President Barrack Obama in his first speech to the Congress of the United States presented the idea of a green economic solution for some of the troubles facing the United States economy. The potential and the flaws of the idea of green economics have since entered the debate of citizen and politician alike (Goldenberg). Globally, the idea of a green market has begun to attract more attention than ever. The state of the global economic situation is dire. Therefore many world leaders have begun to look towards green economics to aid their struggling country. What are green economics exactly? The United Nations environment programme, defines a green economy as: “Economics which result in improved human well-being and social equality, while significantly reducing environmental risks and ecological scarcities.” This type of economics seeks to develop key areas of national economies with a focus on long run stability (Towards a green). This paper will present several aspects of green economics. The aspects covered will include, businesses relationship to green economics, problems with green economics and environmental concerns of a green economy.
A country's economic strength is often measured by how much of the possible workforce it employs. Therefore, jobs are a critical concern in developing national economies. Employed workers contribute to Gross domestic product or GDP, lower unemployment, and pay taxes. Expanding of the green market will certainly create more job opportunities both in the United States and around the world. However, as the green energy market expands other areas of energy may be forced to shrink and cut employment. Whether these two markets will ultimately balance one another out remains to be seen. Many green market advocates argue the balance is tipped by the idea of full cost accounting (McConnell).
Full cost accounting is the method of analyzing costs that are monetary, social, and environmental. Social and environmental costs are often called hidden costs. (“Full Cost accounting”) For several years these hidden costs were overlooked in pursuit of strong national economies. Recently, there has been an increasing out cry from environmentalists and humanitarians regarding the actual cost of the damage done to our ecosystem by this oversight. For example, found in the coal industry, according to a report by the New York academy of sciences: the use of coal costs approximately 175.2 billion to 523.3 billion in social and environmental costs alone for the United States (Epstein). Opponents of full cost accounting argue that since social and environmental have no “real” price tag the numbers produced are simply imagined up by groups pushing their own interests.
A large issue the green economy faces is the high initial cost of investment. People are lost adverse creatures. This means they feel every perceived negative consequence to be two and a half times stronger than a...