- Distributive justice in the international regulation of global ecosystem services
- Global Environmental Change
- Volume | Issue number
- 22 | 4
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Science (FNWI)
Faculty of Humanities (FGw)
- Institute for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Dynamics (IBED)
Amsterdam School for Cultural Analysis (ASCA)
Incentive measures can internalize the external benefits of ecosystem services or, conversely, the external costs of service losses. In the last decade, preliminary steps have been taken in this direction in the form of voluntary payments for ecosystem services. Much larger financial flows may be required, however, to reverse the present trend of ecosystem degradation, making the issue of distributive justice all the more pressing. This article offers a first outline of the international regulation of ecosystem services under different principles of distributive justice. It is concluded that negative incentives, i.e. putting a price on exerting pressures on ecosystems, are better justified than positive incentives, i.e. rewarding the provision of current ecosystem services. Negative incentives do not necessarily worsen the situation of countries, since the revenues of taxation are redistributed. Whether countries become net payers or receivers under a particular incentive and redistribution scheme depends upon its underlying principle of justice.
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