Since the 1970s there has emerged a vast literature exploring the relationship between economic growth and the environment. Fifty years of research has yielded anything but consensus: One major school in the debate claims that humanity long ago overshot Earth’s natural carrying capacity; it thus argues we need to dramatically scale back material consumption (particularly in the West). Another major school argues that growth can be made to be green, as long as environmental damage is accurately priced within the market. There is also a range of radical contributions to this debate, with calls for everything fromeco-socialist revolution to venture-capital backed geoengineering schemes.
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