Relations between economic wealth, ecological footprint, and environmental protection depend on climatic demands

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Richer societies have larger ecological footprints and are more inclined toward environmental protection. But this is an incomplete story as long as climatic temperature is left out of consideration. Our 116-nation study shows that all countries, but especially richer countries, have larger ecological footprints under more demanding thermal climates. Also, business executives’ ratings of environmental regulations and practices are lowest in poor countries with demanding thermal climates (Armenia, Mongolia), moderate in poor and rich countries with undemanding climates (Mauritius, Nigeria), and highest in rich countries with demanding thermal climates (Canada, Finland). The same holds for efforts to respond to “green” consumer demands. Thus under harsher thermal climates, environmental protection is stronger in richer societies with larger ecological footprints but weaker in poorer societies with larger ecological footprints. Explanations are sought in livability appraisals and behavioral adaptations to climato-economic environments. Some speculation is offered about the future management of national ecosystems.
Originele taal-2English
Pagina's (van-tot)948-971
Aantal pagina's24
TijdschriftInternational Journal of Environmental Studies
Nummer van het tijdschrift6
StatusPublished - 2015

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