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The Green Economy and Why It Can Be Successful by Emmett Greenberg.

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1 The Green Economy and Why It Can Be Successful by Emmett Greenberg

2 What is a “Green Economy”? One that helps to protect the planet and results in social equality for people as well Creates jobs that contribute directly to reducing environmental risks and provide lower-skilled and lower-income workers with pathways out of poverty Environmentalist Van Jones called such jobs “green-collar jobs” in his recent best-selling book, The Green Collar Economy

3 Myths About the Green Economy “Greening” of the economy inhibits wealth creation and employment opportunities Only wealthy countries can afford to develop a green economy Renewable energy sources are more expensive than fossil fuels Fossil Fuels Renewables [Note: Not drawn to scale] Cost

4 Debunking the Myths In fact, there are hidden costs to conducting business as usual! Fossil Fuels Renewables Cost [Note: Not drawn to scale] Medical Food/Water Recreational

5 Debunking the Myths II “Only wealthy countries can afford it”; “inhibits employment opportunities” Case Study: Brazil – Brazil recycling recovery levels matching or exceed those in industrialized countries. – Recycling in Brazil generates a value of almost US $2 billion and avoids 10 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions – 60,000 recycling workers (“pickers”) have been organized into cooperatives or associations Their income is more than two times higher than that of individual waste pickers, lifting families out of poverty. – The plight of the Brazilian pickers was depicted in the documentary movie “Waste Land”

6 Why a Green Economy is Economically Sound It invests in “natural capital,” meaning that it uses the natural assets of ecosystems (e.g. forests, lakes, wetlands) as a source of capital (e.g., the ability to produce goods and services) The stability of these natural assets is vital to public services such as recreation, food, and medicine

7 Why the Green Economy is Economically Sound II Furthermore, tourism in a green economy can support local economic growth and reduce poverty – Ecotourism currently enjoys a 20% annual growth rate, about six times the industry-wide rate of growth – Travel and tourism employ 8% of the global workforce, and the creation of jobs in the industry creates additional jobs in the related economy Thus, the greening of the tourism sector will reduce the environmental threats to the industry, and as a result will increase local involvement and protect a valuable source of natural capital

8 Resources Hamilton, Tyler. “Venture Capitalists make business case for going green.” Toronto Star, 29 December 2009. Towards a Green Economy (A Synthesis for Policy Makers) – United Nations Environment Programme, 2011 “The Elusive Green Economy”-The Atlantic, July/August 2009 “What is Green Economics?” Wikipedia- “The Green Collar Economy” Green For All- Website http://www.greenforall.org “Wasteland”- Google Images http://www.wastelandmovie.com “The question is not whether a clean energy economy is our future, it’s where it will thrive.” -Barack Obama, shortly after assuming office

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