Re: Please help with internalized costs argument
Fri, 22 Jan 1999 16:52:44 -0500

The argument of internalising costs is something we all have to grapple with
- the closest I've been able to transmit an understanding of this is to
relate it to natural cycles: for example, if CO2 emissions are the issue,
how many indigenous trees would it take to process that CO2? The acreage,
cost of land, and land management for the period would give us some
indication of cost - of course, this is difficult to apply to all waste -
liquid waste, for example, in many cases coul be rendered comparatively
harmless at a certain dilution - say 1 per 500 000 litres of water - take
the cost of water in that region, as determined by the local authority, as
an indicator. I am sure many on the list could come up with other ways to
apply this....

Hope it helps! (and I agree with one of the other responses - economics is a
lot shallower than we think, and certainly does not contain the silver
bullet - we stand to get caught up in the economic arguments, and lose sight
of the issue - simply obfuscates the issue, that the companies in question
simply must pollute less; the technology and alternative processes do
actually exist already - it is as always, the cost factor that prevents them
from applying this solution. The bottom line: if a process or product is not
sustainable, it must be banned!)

Mr. Muna Lakhani

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