Jonathon Porritt. Capitalism as if the World Matters.
Author: Zakaria, Muhammad
Pub Date: 09/22/2009
Publication: Name: Pakistan Development Review Publisher: Pakistan Institute of Development Economics Audience: Academic Format: Magazine/Journal Subject: Business, international; Social sciences Copyright: COPYRIGHT 2009 Reproduced with permission of the Publications Division, Pakistan Institute of Development Economies, Islamabad, Pakistan. ISSN: 0030-9729
Issue: Date: Autumn, 2009 Source Volume: 48 Source Issue: 3
Accession Number: 249960131
Full Text: Jonathon Porritt. Capitalism as if the World Matters. London: Earthscan Publications Ltd. 2008. 360 pages. $ 27.95.

Jonathon Porritt in his book Capitalism as if the World Matters, tells the readers how capitalism, albeit, a modified one, can solve the environmental problems. He forcefully suggests that to protect the world from environmental disasters a modified form of capitalism should be adopted. Porritt argues that capitalism is not only in tune with ecological sustainability but also with biospherical sustainability; however, it only requires some redesigning.

The author argues that prices, under present capitalism, do not reflect the real environmental costs and goes on to suggest that environmental taxes should be imposed to internalise the environmental costs. He believes that the interualisation of environmental costs will lead to environmental efficiency and create environmental awareness as well. The author also contends that the cost-internalisation will also change the structure of the economy in favour of environmentally-neutral sectors.

The author terms the environmental and human crises, which the world is faced with, as the 'unsustainable world'. To overcome these crises, Porritt suggests making use of five kinds of capitals. These include: natural, human, social, manufactured and financial capitals. Porritt believes that the use of these five capitals shall deliver a modified form of capitalism which would be more concerned about social welfare. The author also believes that this modified form of capitalism will decrease poverty, control environmental degradation and would therefore support 'sustainable development'. To sum-up, Porritt shows the way to a more responsible form of capitalism.
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