Handbook on Green Growth
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Handbook on Green Growth

Edited by Roger Fouquet

Economies around the world have arrived at a critical juncture: to continue to grow fuelled by fossil fuels and exacerbate climate change, or to move towards more sustainable, greener, growth. Choosing the latter is shown to help address climate change, as well as present new economic opportunities. This Handbook provides a deeper understanding of the concept of green growth, and highlights key lessons from the experience of green transformations across the world following a decade of ambitious stimulus packages and green reforms.
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Chapter 3: Green ‘agrowth’ – the next development stage of rich countries

Jeroen C.J.M. van den Bergh and Stefan Drews

Abstract

The literature on growth versus climate shows that theoretical and empirical support for both green growth and anti-growth are currently weak. Both strategies appear to be risky and offer insufficient guarantees for controlling climate change. This chapter proposes another strategy. We need debate in politics and wider society about stepping outside the futile framing of pro- versus anti-growth. Realizing there is a third way can help to overcome current polarization and weaken political resistance against serious climate policy in a post-Paris world. An important advantage of the neutral a-growth strategy is that it can bridge the contrast between green growth and anti-growth positions and thus is able to reduce polarization in the growth debate. Unlike unconditional pro-growth, an a-growth strategy does not give priority to income growth over climate, but is aimed at finding a true balance between all aspects of social welfare.

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