Internalizing Economic Externalities on the Macroeconomic Stage. Exploring and Expanding Paul Hawken’s The Ecology of Commerce: A Declaration of Sustainability for Globalized Solutions
Jay Cooper Beeks 1 2 * , Alexander Ziko 3
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1 Marylhurst University, Marylhurst, OR, USA2 Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, USA3 Franklin Pierce University, Rindge, NH, USA* Corresponding Author


The problem of finding the method and means of internalizing the costs of externalities has stumped economists since Arthur Pigou first presented this issue in 1920.  Since Pigou, several mainstream economists and alternative economists have attempted to further his ideas because of the promise of curbing consumer behaviors and thereby reducing detrimental activities such as the production of greenhouse gases. The current call for a carbon tax to stem the causes of Global Climate Change is just one example of a present day method of internalizing externalities.  Of all of the modern day proponents for a carbon tax and other forms of “green fees”, however, Paul Hawken is arguably the most ardent supporter, believing this to be the most effective method of stemming many of humankind’s pollution activities.  His best selling book The Ecology of Commerce, A Declaration of Sustainability is examined here further, in order to explore Hawken’s arguments for these kinds of microeconomic solutions and to expand on these ideas to include macroeconomic solutions as well. As Hawken and others have noted, global climate change presents a size issue that must be countered using global forces in addition to microeconomic solutions such as with green fees.  This paper explores how global problems such as global climate change can be countered with the aid of international organizations for the benefit of global citizens.


This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Article Type: Research Article

EUR J SUSTAIN DEV RES, Volume 2, Issue 1, 2018, Article No: 03

Publication date: 30 Jan 2018

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