February 25, 2013

Green Economy Perspectives

Before we delve into the nitty gritties of the green economy concept in our forthcoming posts, it is prudent to examine the different viewpoints of green economy. The blanket meaning of win-win economic-environmental aspects of life sheds light on the fundamentals of the concept.
In the industrial quarters green economy is more understood as resource efficient and technology-driven undertaking that increases investments and growth while substantially reducing carbon footprints. Examples of clean mass transport systems, advance waste management hinged on the 3Rs pattern, controlled chemicals use and management, careful mining practices and actions that ensure sustainability of investments; encompass this type of green economy.
In developing countries, green economy is best defined as existing natural resources-based livelihoods. Pastoralists in Africa for instance count their wealth in terms of livestock they possess. The indigenous communities in Asia practice sustainable community hunting and gathering to ensure ample time for replenishing of natural resources. The bare minimum here is the harmony with which humans exist in the natural environment. 
Regardless of where it lies, the basic tenets of green economy remain consistent on sustainability. The industrialized world changing their consumption patterns and general effects of development that undermine the environment while the developing world continuing to pursue their developmental targets but adhering to the sustainability principles. These synergies are crucial.
With increasing evidences that green economy is good for business, people and the planet, not everyone is interested in its ventures. This is because of heavily vested interests in short-term gain of the profit-driven society. Recent studies show that global annual subsidy to the renewable energy sector is $46billion compared to the outrageous $557billion to the fossil-fuel sector thus rendering mute arguments that renewable energy technology is too expensive to compete with the fossil-fuel energy. 
Green politics is hence necessary to keep in check the entities directly involved in policy formulations. This has been the main missing link between poor nations and the wealthy nations, the strong always having their way at the expense of the weaker, barely-willing nations.
We know what is wrong, as we have always known, in the next segment we will start looking at the specifics and the viable solutions and pathways to green economy with explicit insights into several aspects of development and society.

Prepared by: Daniel Wasonga 

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