Nature and the marketplace: capturing the value of ecosystem services




Heal, Geoffrey M.

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Island Press


The environment in the form of a natural ecosystem, planetary biogeochemical cycles, biodiversity, and their interactions make it possible for our existing natural infrastructure to exist. This book explores the economic issues raised by the impact of human activity on ecosystem services and on the global cycles controlled by them and to what extent our current economic institutions and policies manage these impacts. The author's goal is writing this book is to share his vision of how humans can manage their interactions with the natural environment on which their prosperity and well-being are ultimately based. He examines how natural systems and processes benefit human civilization and seeks to identify the institutions and economic policies needed to maintain their integrity. Topics covered include the infrastructure that natural systems provide human societies and the ways that we use and depend on that infrastructure, how a market economy works and how that market, along with price mechanisms, can lead to efficient use of society's resources. He examines cases where market forces could lead to incentives in conserving the environment, as well as biodiversity from an economic perspective, and an analysis of sustainability and sustainable economic development.


220 pgs.


sociological aspects, environmental management, environmental impact, ecosystem management, economics, green marketing, social responsibility of business, product management, environmental aspects