Scarcity and Frontiers by Edward B. Barbier
How Economies Have Developed Through Natural Resource Exploitation

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Throughout much of history, a critical driving force behind global economic development has been the response of society to the scarcity of key natural resources. Increasing scarcity raises the cost of exploiting existing natural resources and creates incentives in all economies to innovate and conserve more of these resources. However, economies have also responded to increasing scarcity by obtaining and developing more of these resources. Since the agricultural transition over 12,000 years ago, this exploitation of new 'frontiers' has often proved to be a pivotal human response to natural resource scarcity. This book provides a fascinating account of the contribution that natural resource exploitation has made to economic development in key eras of world history. This not only fills an important gap in the literature on economic history but also shows how we can draw lessons from these past epochs for attaining sustainable economic development in the world today.

About Edward B. Barbier

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Edward B. Barbier is the John S. Bugas Professor of Economics in the Department of Economics and Finance, University of Wyoming. He has over twenty-five years' experience as an environmental and resource economist, working mainly on the economics of environment and development issues. He is the author of many books on environmental policy, including Natural Resources and Economic Development (Cambridge University Press, 2005) and, with David Pearce, Blueprint for a Sustainable Economy (2000).
Published February 1, 2011 by Cambridge University Press. 768 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Nature & Wildlife, Science & Math, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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Barbier is at pains to point out that the ecological crisis is very much an economic one, too: 'if the environment is regarded as a scarce resource then the deterioration of the environment is also an economic problem.' He contends that there are vital lessons to be learned from the way economies...

Feb 12 2011 | Read Full Review of Scarcity and Frontiers: How E...

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