Sustainability 2010, 2(1), 127-144; doi:10.3390/su2010127
Article

Eco-nomics: Are the Planet-Unfriendly Features of Capitalism Barriers to Sustainability?

1 Center for Health, Intervention and Prevention (CHIP), University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA 2 Department of Anthropology, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT 06269, USA
Received: 1 December 2009; Accepted: 4 January 2010 / Published: 6 January 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability: An Impossible Future?)
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Abstract: This paper argues that there are essential features of capitalist modes of production, consumption, and waste dispersal in interaction with the environment and its built-in systemic features that contradict long-term sustainable development. These features include: (a) contradictions in the origin and meaning of sustainability; (b) the central role of the productivity ethic in capitalism and its reproduction in emergent green capitalism; (c) the commodification of nature and the continued promotion of expanding consumption; (d) globalism and the contradictions of continued Western-style development; and (e) the emergence of anthropogenic ecocrises and crises interaction. In light of these barriers to capitalist sustainability, an alternative social narrative is needed, one that embraces values, understandings, and relationships that promote ecological stability and justice.
Keywords: sustainability; development; capitalist modes of production; environmental degradation; barriers to sustainable development; pluralea

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MDPI and ACS Style

Singer, M. Eco-nomics: Are the Planet-Unfriendly Features of Capitalism Barriers to Sustainability? Sustainability 2010, 2, 127-144.

AMA Style

Singer M. Eco-nomics: Are the Planet-Unfriendly Features of Capitalism Barriers to Sustainability? Sustainability. 2010; 2(1):127-144.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Singer, Merrill. 2010. "Eco-nomics: Are the Planet-Unfriendly Features of Capitalism Barriers to Sustainability?" Sustainability 2, no. 1: 127-144.

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