Paul Lachine

L’état d’esprit du développement durable

MILAN – Les marchés et les incitations capitalistes sont de réels moteurs de l’efficacité économique, de la croissance et de l’innovation. Et, comme l’affirmait de manière très convaincante Ben Friedman de l’Université Harvard dans son livre publié en 2006, The Moral Consequences of Growth (Les Conséquences morales de la croissance, ndt), la croissance économique est bonne pour les sociétés ouvertes et démocratiques. Mais les marchés et les incitations capitalistes ont aussi d’évidentes faiblesses pour ce qui est de la stabilité, de l’équité et la durabilité, des éléments qui peuvent avoir des incidences défavorables sur la cohésion politique et sociale.

A l’évidence, abandonner le système des marchés capitalistes, et donc implicitement la croissance, n’est pas vraiment une option envisageable. Collectivement, nous avons peu d’autre choix que d’essayer d’adapter le système à l’évolution des conditions technologiques et globales pour assurer la stabilité, l’équité (en termes d’opportunités et d’objectifs), et la durabilité. De ces trois impératifs, la durabilité sera peut-être le plus complexe et le plus ambitieux.

Pour nombre de personnes, la durabilité est associée à des ressources naturelles limitées et à l’environnement. La taille de l’économie globale va probablement tripler dans le prochain quart de siècle, en grande partie du fait de la croissance que connaitront les pays en voie de développement dans la mesure où ils rattraperont les revenus des pays développés et adopteront des modèles de consommation similaires. La crainte que les ressources naturelles (au sens large) de la planète et les capacités de récupération pourraient ne pas supporter la pression est donc parfaitement fondée.

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