### Grant McDermott

Assistant Professor
Dept. of Economics
University of Oregon

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# Economics > Doing the right thing

Drowning in university work here, so no time for any blog posts. In the meantime, read this article by Gernot Wagner, who has a new book out explaining why economic forces and policies $$-$$ not individual acts of environmental goodwill or heroism $$-$$ are the only way to ensure meaningful action against climate change... and to resolve environmental problems generally.[*]
Cold, Hard Economics

Global warming is happening faster and with more intensity than anyone expected, yet the fossil-fueled right has succeeded in removing the issue almost entirely from the agenda through a false pretense of defending "free markets." In response, environmentalists have tended to retreat further into their own organically padded corners, when what's needed is to get back to economic basics: Markets cannot be free when benefits are privatized and enormous costs are being socialized. The only way out of this environmental crisis is to align citizens' economic self-interest with the planet's health.[...]
You can also watch a video of Gernot here.

[*] Lest it be unclear, economic policies also include "let prices and the market mechanism run their course". Environmental economics is not simply about knee-jerk, top-down regulation. Although, you already knew that. Right?