Beyond Zero-Sum Environmentalism
24 Pages Posted: 8 May 2017 Last revised: 24 Oct 2017
Date Written: May 8, 2017
Environmental law and environmental protection are often portrayed as requiring trade offs: “jobs versus environment,” “markets versus regulation,” “enforcement versus incentives.” In the summer of 2016, members of the Environmental Law Collaborative gathered to consider how environmentalism and environmental regulation can advance beyond this framing to include new constituents and offer new pathways to tackle the many significant challenges ahead. Months later, the initial activities of the Trump Administration highlighted the use of zero-sum rhetoric, with the appointment of government officials and the issuance of executive orders that indeed seem to view environmental issues as in a zero-sum relationship with jobs or economic progress. In the essays below, the authors explore the meaning and the role of zero-sum environmentalism as a first step in moving beyond it.
Keywords: Zero Sum, Environmental Law, Rhetoric, Trade Offs
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