chapter  14
Sustainable development
Pages 16

Given that we live on a small planet with finite natural resources and a fragile ecosystem, environmental sustainability may be incompatible with continued economic growth, at least of the current sort. But, as this chapter shows, not everyone agrees with this proposition: the optimists believe that human ingenuity and technical fixes will suffice; the pessimists believe that more radical technical, and perhaps social, changes may have to be made. Radical changes may appear threatening to those whose livelihood is linked to the present arrangements but, as we shall see, there may also be some benefits.