The Precautionary Principle: A Critical Appraisal of Environmental Risk Assessment

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Cato Institute, 2001 - Law - 119 pages
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The precautionary principle -- the environmental version of the admonition first, do no harm -- is now enshrined in numerous international environmental agreements including treaties addressing global warming, biological diversity, and various pollutants. Some environmentalists have invoked this principle to justify policies to control, if not ban, any technology that cannot be proven to cause no harm. In this innovative book, Goklany shows that the current use of the precautionary principle to justify such policies is flawed and could be counterproductive because it ignores the possible calamities those very policies might simultaneously create or prolong.
 

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The precautionary principle: a critical appraisal of environmental risk assessment

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Until recently, both the American mindset and the American economy have been particularly insular. Larsson, a doctoral student and freelance writer, brings home the new world perspective in this ... Read full review

Contents

ESCAPING GOBLINS ONLY TO BE CAPTURED BY WOLVES?
1
DDT SILENT SPRING OR SILENT PEOPLE?
13
THE RISKS AND REWARDS OF GENETICALLY MODIFIED CROPS
29
GLOBAL WARMING FROM THE FRYING PAN INTO THE FIRE?
57
ENSURING THAT GOOD INTENTIONS DO NOT SPAWN BAD OUTCOMES
89
REFERENCES
95
INDEX
109
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About the author (2001)

Indur M. Goklany has worked with federal and state governments, think tanks and the private sector for over 30 years, and written extensively on globalization and environmental issues including sustainable development, technological change, food and health. He has represented the United States at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and in the negotiations that established the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. He was chief of the Technical Assessment Division of the National Commission on Air Quality and a consultant to the Environmental Protection Agency s Office of Policy, Planning, and Evaluation. He is the author of "The Precautionary Principle and Clearing the Air: The Real Story of the War on Air Pollution".

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