The Economy, The Biosphere and Planetary Boundaries: Towards Biosphere Economics

Nine planetary boundaries have been proposed, capturing essential biophysical processes that sustain the Earth System and its biosphere in an accommodating state for humanity. Drawing on economics literature, we propose conditions under which remaining within these boundaries is in line with economic policy. We assert that pervasive uncertainties combined with impacts of trespassing planetary boundaries clearly legitimate using safe minimum standards or precautionary approaches. Moreover,…

Pollution control with uncertain stock dynamics: When, and how, to be precautious

The precautionary principle(PP) applied to environmental policy stipulates that,in the presence of un certainty,society must take robust preventive action to guard against worst case outcomes.It follows that the higher the degree of uncertainty,the more aggressive this preventive action should be.This normative maxim is explored in the case of a stylized dynamic model of pollution control with uncertain(in the Knightian sense)stock dynamics,using the robust control framework…

Model Uncertainty, Ambiguity and the Precautionary Principle: Implications for Biodiversity Management

We analyze ecosystem management under ‘unmeasurable’Knightian uncertainty or ambiguity which, given the uncertainties characterizing ecosystems, might be a more appropriate framework relative to the classic risk case (measurable uncertainty). This approach is used as a formal way of modelling the precautionary principle in the context of least favorable priors and maxmin criteria.We provide biodiversity management rules which incorporate the precautionary principle. These rules take the…

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