Green and Competitive

Ending the Stalemate

Michael E. Porter

Claas van der Linde

THE NEED FOR REGULATION to protect the environment gets widespread but grudging acceptance: widespread because everyone wants a livable planet, grudging because of the lingering belief that environmental regulations erode competitiveness. The prevailing view is that there is an inherent and fixed trade-off: ecology versus the economy. On one side of the trade-off are the social benefits that arise from strict environmental standards. On the other are industry’s private costs for prevention and cleanup—costs that lead to higher prices and reduced competitiveness. With the argument framed this way, progress on environmental quality has become a kind of ...

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