Paying For Nature's Services

Here's another "economics meets the environment" story:
Eco-Capitalists Save Mother Nature By Charging for Her Services.

That was the fetching title of an article in this month's Wired
magazine, which described a nascent fund that puts a dollar value on
the services nature renders to us humans: wetlands protecting against
floods, insects pollinating crops, and trees processing CO2. To the
extent that somebody is willing to pay for those services - whether a
corporation looking for a pollution offset or a government wanting
doing wilderness preservation - investors into the fund can make a
return on their initial investment.

It's still way early, but ten years ago so were carbon offsets, and
now we're on the precipice of a full-blown carbon tax. So keep an eye
out on this: maybe, just maybe, free-market capitalist dynamics can be
put into motion to preserve the planet.


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