Economic growth and biodiversity loss in an age of tradable permits.

  • Jon Rosales
  • Published 2006 in
    Conservation biology : the journal of the Society…


Tradable permits are increasingly becoming part of environmental policy and conservation programs. The efficacy of tradable permit schemes in addressing the root cause of environmental decline-economic growth--will not be achieved unless the schemes cap economic activity based on ecological thresholds. Lessons can be learned from the largest tradable permit scheme to date, emissions trading now being implemented with the Kyoto Protocol. The Kyoto Protocol caps neither greenhouse gas emissions at a level that will achieve climate stability nor economic growth. If patterned after the Kyoto Protocol, cap-and-trade schemes for conservation will not ameliorate biodiversity loss either because they will not address economic growth. In response to these failures to cap economic growth, professional organizations concerned about biodiversity conservation should release position statements on economic growth and ecological thresholds. The statements can then be used by policy makers to infuse these positions into the local, national, and international environmental science-policy process when these schemes are being developed. Infusing language into the science-policy process that calls for capping economic activity based on ecological thresholds represents sound conservation science. Most importantly, position statements have a greater potential to ameliorate biodiversity loss if they are created and released than if this information remains within professional organizations because there is the potential for these ideas to be enacted into law and policy.

Cite this paper

@article{Rosales2006EconomicGA, title={Economic growth and biodiversity loss in an age of tradable permits.}, author={Jon Rosales}, journal={Conservation biology : the journal of the Society for Conservation Biology}, year={2006}, volume={20 4}, pages={1042-50} }