You Have to Admit It's Getting Better -

From Economic Prosperity to Environmental Quality

Terry L. Anderson, editor

Economic growth and environmental quality: We can have our cake and eat it too.

To the doomsayers who maintain that natural resources are being depleted and the environment is getting worse, Terry Anderson and his fellow contributors offer a bold retort: it's getting better all the time. They present a powerful argument that through such established institutions as property rights, the rules of law, and limited government, economic growth and environmental quality will both flourish.

You Have to Admit It 's Getting Better shows how, focusing our energies on developing and protecting the institutions of freedom, rather than on regulating human use of natural resources through political processes, we can in fact have our environmental cake and eat it too. The book offers a number of often-surprising revelations that debunk many commonly held beliefs about the future of our environment. It shows, for example, how liberalization of international trade is more likely to improve environmental quality than reduce it. It also explains how the prosperity and improved well-being that we enjoy today are not leaving future generations worse off but rather leaving them with more capital and larger stocks of natural resources. Throughout the book, the authors repeatedly show that economic growth is not the antithesis of environmental quality: rather, the two go hand in hand if the incentives are right.

Contributors: Terry L. Anderson, Madhusudan Bhattari, B. Delworth Gardner, Indur M. Golanky, Bjorn Lomborg, RObert E. McCormick, Seth W. Morton, Maya Vijayaraghavan, Bruce Yandle.

Hoover Institution Press
Stanford, CA
2004; 212 pages.
paper, $15
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Terry L. Anderson is a senior fellow at PERC and the former President and Executive Director of PERC as well as the John and Jean De Nault Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. His research helped launch the idea of free market environmentalism and has prompted public debate over the proper role of government in managing...
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