The Healthcare Policy Podcast: Prof. Robert Costanza Discusses Ecological Economics

25 January 2022

Our economy is frequently defined as one of unpaid costs. (Think: Garret Hardin and the tragedy of the commons.) Nature or natural resources are considered either inexhaustible and/or the byproducts of their use, such as polluted air and degraded water quality, are externalized costs borne by society, i.e., no one. Our economic model perfectly well explains the climate crisis. Treating our atmosphere and our oceans as open sewers has resulted in both global warming and helps to explain the planet's ongoing and accelerating biological annihilation, or the sixth mass extinction. The field of ecological economics attempts to, in two words, internalize externalities.

During this 30-minute interview Professor Costanza begins by briefly describing the field of ecological economics. The interview progresses to his discussion of the valuing nature, here costal wetlands, he explains common asset trusts, the development of more rational measures of economic development (beyond GDP) such as the Genuine Progress Indicator and of course provides comment regarding the climate crisis (including the use of motivational interviewing in defining climate goals).

Listen to the podcast on the Healthcare Policy Podcast website:

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