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Is Growth Passé?

Summary:
Some suggest that the Paris climate agreement’s target for limiting global warming can be achieved only by stopping economic expansion. But there is ample room to change the quality of growth and significantly reduce its environmental impact without condemning billions of people to lives of deprivation. NEW YORK – It’s clear: we are living beyond our planet’s limits. Unless we change something, the consequences will be dire. Should that something be our focus on economic growth? Is Growth Passé? Kanok Sulaiman/Getty Images Democratic Leadership in a Populist Age PS OnPoint

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Some suggest that the Paris climate agreement’s target for limiting global warming can be achieved only by stopping economic expansion. But there is ample room to change the quality of growth and significantly reduce its environmental impact without condemning billions of people to lives of deprivation.

NEW YORK – It’s clear: we are living beyond our planet’s limits. Unless we change something, the consequences will be dire. Should that something be our focus on economic growth?

Climate change represents the most salient risk we face, and we are already getting a glimpse of the costs. And in “we,” I include Americans. The United States, where a major political party is dominated by climate-change deniers, is the highest per capita emitter of greenhouse gases and the only country refusing to adhere to the 2015 Paris climate agreement. So there is a certain irony in the fact that the US has also become one of the countries with the highest levels of...

Joseph E. Stiglitz
The official account of Joseph E. Stiglitz, Nobel laureate economist based at Columbia University.

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