What are some best practices for including the hidden costs of ecological disruption into economic decision making?

For instance, how can the cost-benefit of pollution be shifted toward conservation or remediation? How can costs to the environment in terms of air emissions, coastal erosion, or forest destruction be quantified (absolutely or relatively) and be factored in to the costs of goods and services?

Regulations/enforcement/fines? Taxes? Lawsuits?

  • $\begingroup$ Are you familiar with the Coase theorem? $\endgroup$ – Giskard Feb 16 '16 at 9:53
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    $\begingroup$ Or with pigouvian taxes? $\endgroup$ – Hector Feb 16 '16 at 13:23
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    $\begingroup$ This is really two questions. One is in the body and asks how can we internalize externalities. The other is in the title and asks about accountability and justice. They have potentially very different answers. Assigning and protecting the property rights to a piece of rain-forest will ensure it is efficiently exploited or conserved. But if you assign those rights to a a rubber baron brother of the president and take away the traditional rights of the tribe that lived there you won't do anything that I recognize as accountable or just. $\endgroup$ – BKay Feb 16 '16 at 14:29
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    $\begingroup$ Part of your question is: "How can costs to the environment ... be quantified". This website (ecosystemvaluation.org/dollar_based.htm) is a useful starting point - there are large literatures on most of the methods described. $\endgroup$ – Adam Bailey Feb 17 '16 at 12:40

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