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Lecture 5

Political Science 2j03 Week 5 LEcture 1.docx

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McMaster University
Political Science
Richard Mc Master

Global Political Economy and the Environment - Research Essay due Mon June 11 th o 8 peer review, 2 primary or other sources (ex. newspaper) o Foot notes, APA whatever you want o No requirements for diagrams or pictures - Final Exam June 13 th o 1 of 2 - one long essay questions requiring to reflect on course themes/materials/readings etc. (Just like 1g06)/ or an essay question but it wouldn’t be worth as much because it would be offset by short id or multiple choice - Thoughts on Life and Debt Agenda Environment – economic rationalism Global initiatives and economic interest Economic Rationalism:  Famous essay from 1960 by garret harden, “The tragedy of the commons” o If you have a lot of cows, there will be a day when the environment cannot support the cattle o No one owns the ranch or the area where the cattle live o Because no one owns it, no one wants to protect it (tragedy = freedom) o Freedom of putting cattle on land, opening up factories, freedom of industry, freedom to create hazardous waste, this freedom is unsustainable o Benefit of cow = +1; Cost of a caw = less than 1 o Adding to the heard near the final number = disastrous o Requires mutual coercion, which would change the benefit and cost o Actors are rational utility maximizers o Allow market to remain free (liberalism) o Market will allocate resources efficiently o Need to impose market logic on the ecological crisis o About the application of ownership and property to the environment  Kuznets Curve o 1990’s, Bill Clinton liked it o When society and countries begin to industrialize you will see adverse effects start to mount up tin the realm of the environment inform of pollution and the compromise of water quality/air quality, more smog days as these economies become industrial economies/untreated sewage o Looking at the advance industrial becoming post industrial, the amount of pollution per unit of activity in the economy begins to drastically reduce as countries industrialize and eventually you will see environmental degradation begin to drop  This happens as GDP per capita begin to increase o See a greater ability of these societies to prevent this degradation o Pollutants to completely defy this model = Green House gases (Carbon Dioxide/Methane) o Marshallian cross is shown – identifying optimal price and quantity  Consider an electricity Bill o Cost of supplying electricity for the house (factors in labor costs/management/resource inputs/taxes etc.) o What about other costs that might exist?  Health costs? - Pertaining to asthma/hospitalization/premature death etc.  Sulphur and ash deposits on buildings and vehicles  What about the carbon emissions and the costs of climate change?  Externalities o look @ economic notes  Privatize the commons? o Enclosure results in the property rights of land  Property rights will allow for coercion in places of market failure and environmental degradation o Water and air might be difficult to assert property rights over o What’s more common is to talk about ownership of what degrades the economy o Internalize those externalities (4 methods)  1) The polluter pays  Maximize and use market to try and allocate resources an efficient way for society  Get firms to invest in clean tech/Pay Gov. the right to pollute who will use this money to help promote green tech  2) Taxation  A new instrument to intervene in market to provide an incentive structure  3) Tradable Permits  Most embedded  Takes advantage of the flexibility that exists in high functioning markets  Set limit of permits available for polluters allowing them to permit (1 permit = 1 ton of sulphur dioxide for example) so industries will buy these permits  This provides a new incentive of industry to find ways to produce a ‘cleaner’ product and can sell the permits creating a new market (Investment can lead to profit)  4) Precautionary Principle  Some pollutants that have adverse effects that are too hard to predict but we know they cause severe effects, therefore we ought to ban them and not use them in our industrial practices, therefore this precautionary principle will strongly encourage against their use  Ex. Chlorine/
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