Thursday, 11 February 2016

Committee of the Regions report 11/2 GDP RIP?

A debate on the use of GDP as an indicator of territorial development was held. Greens have long held the view that GDP and the Economic Growth it measures are of little use as an indicator of social progress. This is how I responded to the debate:

I thank the rapporteur for her amendments which highlight some of the inherent problems with GDP as a measure of social or environmental progress. It was the creator of the concept of GDP who said that 
'Distinctions should be kept in mind between quantity and quality of growth' GDP takes no account of consumption of non renewable resources or degradation of the environment. So just as the road to hell is paved with good intentions so the road to catastrophic damage to our climate could be made up of an ever rising GDP. The UK Government and your Governments measure their 'success' or failure in terms of GDP which has no relation to quality of life or our environment. GDP is a dangerous indicator if it drives policy decisions and needs to be abandoned.

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