Value of wilderness debate: Wilderness wins 9:1

Posted on October 19, 2011


I found this debate in The Economist to be a terrific, brainy way to get a review of how we got to where we are today on our sense of the value of wilderness.  The best points I thought were made by “featured guest” contributors that centered on the relatively poor results environmentalists achieve when they take a no compromise position.    Michael Shellenberger & Ted Nordhaus make the lucid point that,

Ignoring those questions (of how to manage development), and engaging in romantic visions that such a world can be sustained through small-is-beautiful projects, imperils the effort to produce a beautiful and healthy planet more than any corporation or government.

It is surprising to me that readers of  The Economist would be so profoundly in favor of the notion that:

This house believes that untouched wildernesses have a value beyond the resources and other utility that can be extracted from them.

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