, Volume 20, Issue 14, pp 3453-3458
Date: 30 Jul 2011

Economic growth and biodiversity

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I argue that there is no fundamental conflict between economic growth and biodiversity. Humans can maintain and produce biological diversity just as we can maintain and produce other goods. Efforts to preserve and enhance biodiversity add to the size and growth of the economy. We are losing biodiversity because of human preferences and human inefficiencies, not because of economic growth. Inefficiency occurs when our actions do not reflect our real preferences, and is mainly due to failures of social coordination. To alleviate the problem of biodiversity loss we should address these failures.