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Re: [GreenYes] 'Producer Responsibility' and Consumer Cost
Helen Spiegelman wrote:
> At 04:09 PM 12/13/2001 -0500, wrote:
> >(snip) producer responsibility won't work because even if the
> >producers are made "responsible" for making sure the products and materials
> >they produce are recycled or reused, the costs associated with this will be
> >passed on guessed it....the consumers.  We are footing the bill
> >already so why bother?
> John is demonstrating a habit of thought that proves the degree to which we
> have become a 'consumer society'. John, the taxpayer is footing the bill
> (municipal collection, landfills, recycling...) not the consumer. They are
> *not* the same person. If the cost were passed on to the consumer it would
> be part of the purchase price and included as a service by the producer
> (much like, say, a warrantee?). Instead, the cost is passed on to the local
> community, what economists call an 'externality' or let's say a subsidy.

Bravo! clear thinking - like in our country - we ALL pay taxes, part of
which go to build roads - but the roads are used mainly by a) business
and industry for their profit; b) wealthy people who own cars.. so we
the poor, subsidize the rich... (before the nitpickers get on board, yes
we do use public transport, but if the roads were built just for civil
society, then we would need about one tenth of the roads we do have, if
not less)

internalising externalities is being resisted by most companies, if not
all - because then, truly sustainable products become cheaper, and are
not subsidised by external health costs, or environmental degradation,
etc etc etc

take care all...


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