Agricultural Economics Department


Date of this Version



Published in Cornhusker Economics, 03/02/2005. Produced by the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Department of Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska–Lincoln.


All children hope that they will someday make more money than their parents; just as parents hope their children will live more fulfilling lives than they did. These goals imply economic growth for the society as a whole. If the country expands its economic pie, there is more to go around for everyone. But economic growth could lead to excessive use of natural resources and other environmental amenities. If this is the case, there may be conflicts between growth and environmental protection, both of which are important social objectives. Exactly what is the relationship between economic growth and the use of environmental resources?