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The Exchanges between Economic Development and Environment

A discussion on the trade-off of economic development with respect to environment

There is an ongoing debate between economic development and conservation of environment. Conservation of environment is necessary for future generation, as it yields benefit for future generation. On the other hand economic development is more than vital for developing the economy of a country. In this assignment we going to discuss what is the trade off of economic development with respect to Environment and what should be done to make a sustainable economic and environment development policy

In the age of modern civilization, the continuous increasing trends of world economy growth in the tertiary sectors have lead to several controversial issues. This sectoral shift accelerates the process of

urbanization and industrialization. This development is creating environmental pollution. In addition, continuous pressure of population growth has become a threat to natural resources in terms of filling up of agricultural land, loss of inlands and wetlands, and degradation of forests. The losses of natural resources become a threat to greater society as well as for the direct users (often rural poor) of these resources, who depend on these re-sources for their livelihood. At the same time the process of development tries to integrate these rural poor into urban economy. So there are different kinds of trade off going on between economic development and environmental situation.

Economic development is fundamentally about enhancing the factors of productive capacity - land, labor, capital, and technology of a national, state or local economy. It is the increase in the standard of living in a nation's population with sustained growth from a simple, low-income economy to a modern, highincome economy. Also, if the local quality of life could be improved, economic development would be enhanced. Its scope includes the process and policies by which a nation improves the economic, political, and social well-being of its people.

Environment is surrounding atmosphere/condition for existence. In another word, the sum total of all surroundings of a living organism, including natural forces and other living things, which provide conditions for development and growth as well as of danger and damage is considered as the environment.

A technique of reducing or forgoing one or more desirable outcomes in exchange for increasing or obtaining other desirable outcomes in order to maximize the total return or effectiveness under given circumstances. More easily, an exchange that occurs as a compromise is trade-off. Synonyms may be feed-back.


Aspect of todays economical as well as environmental condition

Todays world is based on economy. So any development is related to economical development. This development creates different aspects in our environment and society. People of a society and country are barely affected by the economic development. Todays economic development has offered a greater choice of occupations, an expanding consumer base for services and trade, increased transport availability to markets and the competitive advantage of proximity for perishable agricultural products.

Urbanization has bought intense competition for land, increasing land values and driving land use change with consequent deterioration and loss of access to natural resources traditionally used for livelihoods and compels them in joining to the unskilled daily labour force of the cities newly developed. Direct dependence of people of developing countries on the natural re-source base is conspicuous. Damage of wetlands, inlands and coastal fisheries, woodlands, ponds and lakes and grazing fields for urban extensions or the construction of large dams, push traditional dwellers, who are among the poorest in the society into further vulnerability. Within the broader context of environmental management and sustainable development, conservation aims to improve the total quality of life as well as maintain the ecological character of the natural resources, while loss of natural resources are obvious in order to meet the demand for new developmental projects, new agricultural land and other economic development which is demanded by increasing population growth, foreign aid, and modern technology. So todays economic trade-offs with environment is really getting complex and confusion.

The consequences of todays Economical and Environmental policies

With the development of economic and as a result of the ongoing process of industrialization, the means and tools man uses have changed a lot. Now anything man does leaves a consequence back. For example, as a means of communication we use vehicles and as sources of production we establish mills and factories. All these things use chemicals and fuels that create a lot of by-products, gases and other substances that combine to have a bad effect on all the elements of the environment such as the air, the water, the soil, and the flora as well as the fauna of a community. Environmental pollution has taken the most fatal form in the capital cities and other industrial cities of the developing countries. On the financial side, Poor, especially the rural poor are facing problems as they depend on earnings from natural resources. The state of world poverty significantly depend on the traditional , natural resource based livelihoods and with the process of urbanization and industrialization it becomes more difficult for their sustainability.


It is important to integrate and reconcile the economic, social and environmental aspects within a holistic and balanced sustainable development framework. Economic analysis has a special role in contemporary national policy making, since many important decisions fall within the economic domain. Unfortunately, mainstream economics which is used for practical policy making has often ignored the environmental and social dimensions of sustainable development. Optimality and durability are two broad approaches that help to integrate the economic, environmental and social dimensions of sustainable development. While there are overlaps between the two methods, the main thrust is somewhat different in each case.

The optimality-based approach has been widely used in economic analysis to generally maximize welfare (or utility), subject to the requirement that the stock of productive assets (or welfare itself) is nondecreasing in the long term. This assumption is common to most sustainable economic growth models, as reviewed by Pezzey and Islam.

The second broad integrative approach focuses primarily on sustaining the quality of life by satisfying environmental, social and economic sustainability requirements. Such a framework favors durable development paths that permit growth, but are not necessarily economically optimal. The environmental and social sustainability requirements may be measured by indicators of state relating to the durability or health (resilience, vigor and organization) of ecological and socio-economic systems.

Sustainable solution study

This study of interconnected system dynamics or Interdisciplinary study drives science into a new era where an integrated way of learning seems to be essential. Subject like environmental science is derived from this philosophy where we are considering both science and humanity in a same place and we are eager to manage the collective knowledge for next generation. The study of parts is near end and the study of whole is going to start. It is revolution because working with complex systems goes against traditional science practice. Until now, scientists have spent a lot of time breaking things down into ever smaller component parts known as reductionism to understand how each part works in isolation of other parts, only to find that this does not help to understand how the whole system works together.

Now, scientists are bringing the pieces of the puzzle together to look at the interactions between
components of a system, to understand how the whole system works.


The above analysis on the issue of the trade-off between environment and economic development reveals some crucial points for consideration. It is important to integrate and reconcile the economic, social and environmental aspects within a holistic and balanced sustainable development framework. We have already wasted and destroyed vast amounts of natural resources, and in so doing have put earth at risk. We must preserve the earth for our next generation. In any case, poverty and environmental damage are often linked. We have to make economic development with support of environment. No one wants to stop economic progress that could give millions better lives. But we must insist on sustainable development that combines environmental care, social justice and economic growth.

REFERENCES,_social,_and_environmental_elements_of_developmen t Lecture- ENV system and Natural Feedback