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Economic Rights, Sustainable Development, and Environmental Management

PAM, Vol. 16 No. 2, (2011)

In 2008, a severe economic downturn, or recession, throughout the industrialized world became painfully apparent as evidenced by several significant indicators. These indicators included high costs in oil prices, food, health care, transportation, housing, and a substantial credit debacle leading to the bankruptcy of large and well established investment and commercial banks in many nations around the world. Economists argue that the huge increases in commodity prices came as a consequence of extended periods of easily available credit and the primary cause of the downturn was indeed financial collapse since creditors could no longer be compensated. This in turn led to increased unemployment, housing foreclosures, bankruptcy, and other contemporaneous economic downturns in markets around the world. Consequently, economic catastrophe resulted and those hit hardest by this catastrophe were the middleclass and poor. Suffice it to say, economic repair is in order. One suggestion for addressing the adverse impact experienced by the middle class and poor will be to reexamine president Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s (FDR) “Economic Bill of Rights” program. In order to make economic reform meaningful, a reaffirmation of environmental and welfare policies will be assessed along with an environmental management strategy.

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