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Green and Prosperous Land: A Blueprint for Rescuing the British Countryside

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‘One of the most important books of the decade’ Country Life Finally, a practical, realistic plan to rescue, preserve and enhance nature. News about Britain’s wildlife and ecosystems tends to be grim. In Green and Prosperous Land, Oxford economist and Natural Capital Committee chair Dieter Helm shares his radical but tangible plan for positive change. This pragmatic approach ‘One of the most important books of the decade’ Country Life Finally, a practical, realistic plan to rescue, preserve and enhance nature. News about Britain’s wildlife and ecosystems tends to be grim. In Green and Prosperous Land, Oxford economist and Natural Capital Committee chair Dieter Helm shares his radical but tangible plan for positive change. This pragmatic approach to environmentalism includes a summary of Britain’s green assets, a look towards possible futures and an achievable 25-year plan for a green and prosperous country. The bold generational plan assesses the environment as a whole, explains the necessity of protecting and enhancing our green spaces and offers a clear, financially sound strategy to put Britain on a greener path. Helm’s arguments expose the economic inefficiencies in our environmental policies and thus highlight the need for change. Leaving behind the current sterile and ineffective battle between the environment and the economy, this revolutionary plan champions the integration of the economy and the environment together to deliver sustainable, eco-friendly economic growth. There is hope, and there is time, but we must act now.


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‘One of the most important books of the decade’ Country Life Finally, a practical, realistic plan to rescue, preserve and enhance nature. News about Britain’s wildlife and ecosystems tends to be grim. In Green and Prosperous Land, Oxford economist and Natural Capital Committee chair Dieter Helm shares his radical but tangible plan for positive change. This pragmatic approach ‘One of the most important books of the decade’ Country Life Finally, a practical, realistic plan to rescue, preserve and enhance nature. News about Britain’s wildlife and ecosystems tends to be grim. In Green and Prosperous Land, Oxford economist and Natural Capital Committee chair Dieter Helm shares his radical but tangible plan for positive change. This pragmatic approach to environmentalism includes a summary of Britain’s green assets, a look towards possible futures and an achievable 25-year plan for a green and prosperous country. The bold generational plan assesses the environment as a whole, explains the necessity of protecting and enhancing our green spaces and offers a clear, financially sound strategy to put Britain on a greener path. Helm’s arguments expose the economic inefficiencies in our environmental policies and thus highlight the need for change. Leaving behind the current sterile and ineffective battle between the environment and the economy, this revolutionary plan champions the integration of the economy and the environment together to deliver sustainable, eco-friendly economic growth. There is hope, and there is time, but we must act now.

30 review for Green and Prosperous Land: A Blueprint for Rescuing the British Countryside

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ryan

    Dry as dust; reads like lecture notes. English Pastoral was far more vivid and convincing, perhaps because its author is an actual farmer and not an academic.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Mike Toms

    I’ve always been a little suspicious of the natural capital argument, alert to the ‘risk’ that comes with playing by the rules of the economists, bankers and politicians who have done so much damage to the natural world. Having said that Dieter Helm makes a sound case for challenging the business as usual approach. He uses the natural capital idea to drive forward the notion of the polluters paying for the damage they cause, for the delivery of public good, and for net gain. The arguments are wel I’ve always been a little suspicious of the natural capital argument, alert to the ‘risk’ that comes with playing by the rules of the economists, bankers and politicians who have done so much damage to the natural world. Having said that Dieter Helm makes a sound case for challenging the business as usual approach. He uses the natural capital idea to drive forward the notion of the polluters paying for the damage they cause, for the delivery of public good, and for net gain. The arguments are well presented, though sometimes a bit repetitive and on occasion condescending in tone, and I came away thinking that the natural world would benefit from the radical shift in approach that Helm proposes. Of course the polluter should pay; of course we should see public money used to deliver public (as opposed to private) goods, but I do not see that such an approach should automatically preclude rewilding or letting the rest of Nature find its own path. Nature has an intrinsic value that should not be measured by economics and to me we also need to champion this. Helm’s perspective, it seems to me, is that we need to manage the natural world and he is proposing a better way to do this, better for us economically and better for nature. While it is right that we should challenge and change the current economic models and ways of living, we also need to remember our place in the world and be more humble in how we view this. The book was an easy read, Helm’s grasp of economics authoritative but his grasp of the natural world (and of the quantity and quality of big data and the possibilities of AI) was sometimes less so. Definitely a book to read if you are interested in the environment.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Roger Morgan-Grenville

    Sometimes dry, sometimes maybe guilty of making the some of the changes seem too uncomplicated, this is nonetheless a really important book to read. It is based on the work the author did for the UK government's Natural Capital project, so he has had access to the most up to date research, and fellow scientists. The overall point? That, if we stop messing up our five main ecosystems, the benefits will be economic just as much as they are environmental. Sometimes dry, sometimes maybe guilty of making the some of the changes seem too uncomplicated, this is nonetheless a really important book to read. It is based on the work the author did for the UK government's Natural Capital project, so he has had access to the most up to date research, and fellow scientists. The overall point? That, if we stop messing up our five main ecosystems, the benefits will be economic just as much as they are environmental.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rich Thomas

    A frightening, yet engaging read. As a farmer, it fills me with hope and desperation. We are in the hands of policy makers now, I only hope they make the best decisions for the environment and the people who live and work in rural Britain.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Lucía

    An economist's argument for the 25-year Environment Plan proposed by the Natural Capital Committee of which he is the chair. An economist's argument for the 25-year Environment Plan proposed by the Natural Capital Committee of which he is the chair.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Aaron

    Very interesting read on topics that I had no prior knowledge about.

  7. 5 out of 5

    George

    Not always an easy read - for reasons raised in other reveiws. But it's good. Good insight into natural capital. A book about nature, economics and the links between the two Not always an easy read - for reasons raised in other reveiws. But it's good. Good insight into natural capital. A book about nature, economics and the links between the two

  8. 5 out of 5

    Elaine Swapp

  9. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

  10. 4 out of 5

    Ash

  11. 4 out of 5

    Gregory Greif

  12. 5 out of 5

    Catherine

  13. 4 out of 5

    Robert Ewing

  14. 5 out of 5

    Will

  15. 4 out of 5

    Wouter

  16. 4 out of 5

    Elise

  17. 5 out of 5

    Tom McVeigh

  18. 5 out of 5

    John

  19. 5 out of 5

    Tom Yates

  20. 5 out of 5

    Raquel Bonelli

  21. 4 out of 5

    Rob Green

  22. 5 out of 5

    Camilla Roberts

  23. 5 out of 5

    Kate Haymes

  24. 5 out of 5

    Joseph

  25. 5 out of 5

    Dr Anthony

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jake Westmoreland

  27. 4 out of 5

    Stuart Harris

  28. 4 out of 5

    Alex Ishkin

  29. 5 out of 5

    Henry Crabb

  30. 4 out of 5

    Harry

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