Wilderness and Economics

“Wildland preservation is motivated by a variety of ethical, biological, cultural, and recreational concerns. Rarely are efforts to protect wildlands motivated by an interest in promoting economic growth. Those working on wildland preservation issues have been forced to take up with the issue of local economic impacts because those supporting commercial development of those wild natural landscapes emphatically assert that wildland preservation damages the local and national economies by restricting access to valuable natural resources and constraining commercial economic activity that otherwise would take place.”  From: www.thewildlifenews.com

GR:  Must we always try to protect the land by arguing that protection brings economic benefits for humans?  Perhaps that is the only practical approach, but we could argue more strongly that healthy ecosystems contribute to the health of the Earth and benefit us all.

 

2 thoughts on “Wilderness and Economics

  1. Garry Rogers, you are absolutely correct, of course. But if all people were able to understand your reasoning, there would be no problem with human beings destroying nature. The fact is that a great many people, both those who harm nature and wild lands and also those who do nothing to stop them, do not have this perception. Instead, the economic argument is put forward over and over again that protecting wilderness will harm the economy. It is the main argument and the main reason offered for allowing development on public lands by oil, gas, coal, and other destructive and polluting interests. So if this argument can be countered by the truth, then more and more people may begin to see that harming wild lands does harm us all – a view that is not readily grasped by many people, though it may seem obvious to some.

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