November 8, 2021
Considering that many of the solutions proposed by mainstream climate leaders, activists, and policymakers often fall short,
Renouncing counter-productive regulations, taxes, subsidies, and central planning as means to protecting our environment,
Arguing that Market Environmentalism, where markets, enterprise, trade, and communities create accountability and unleash innovation, is the best approach to fully address climate change and resource use,
Affirm and pledge to uphold the following four principles:
1. Market Economy:
Economic and environmental success are not mutually exclusive. While many claim the “market approach” has been tried, it is a “crony approach” that has often prevailed, marked by fossil fuel subsidies, energy monopolies, and regulatory capture. The freer an economy, the better its environmental outcomes. As economies grow richer, they become more efficient and environmentally conscious, which leads to a gradual decoupling of economic growth and pollution. Only the market economy’s dynamic nature incentivizes entrepreneurs to do “more with less” and to create innovations that limit our ecological footprint. Free trade is crucial for both innovation and cooperation between people around the world, to jointly tackle environmental challenges.
2. Private Property Rights:
Property rights provide the incentives for both environmental sustainability and accountability. That which no one owns, no one cares for. In contrast, ownership stimulates stewardship and responsibility. Strong property rights also include the ability to trade resources, which allows for markets to reallocate natural resources for conservation purposes.
Many environmental challenges are communal in nature, and local communities are better placed than governments to manage their shared resources. Where central planners lack the on-the-ground information, communities benefit from the dynamic, decentralized knowledge necessary to implement effective conservation strategies. Decentralizing power from government bureaucracies to local communities fosters closer cooperation, resource management, and environmental accountability.
4. Optimism and Innovation:
Nihilism, degrowth, and misanthropy are the enemies of the environment. We must embrace optimism and the power of innovation to achieve real change. Humans are not a plague on the planet but rather the “ultimate resource,” capable of bringing forth innovative ideas and solutions to protect our environment. Environmental challenges can be solved through innovation, technological progress, and entrepreneurship—while rejecting alarmist and unscientific approaches.
The environmental narrative is changing. There is no more room for political gridlock. It is time for real action and real solutions. Market Environmentalism affirms the powerful role markets, enterprise, trade, and local communities play in protecting our environment and empowers them to do so. Ultimately, only a Green Market Revolution will ensure humanity’s flourishing and true environmental sustainability.