Shaping planetary health inequities: the political economy of the Australian growth model

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    Abstract

    Planetary health equity–the equitable enjoyment of good health and wellbeing in a sustainable ecosystem–is under threat from anthropogenic climate change and economic and social inequities. Driving these major challenges is the global consumptogenic system that encourages excessive production and consumption goods and services that are harming human and planetary health. Growth models lie at the core of the consumptogenic system. This paper examines the sources of economic growth in Australia, the coalitions that sustain this approach politically, and the implications of these dynamics for planetary health equity. Australia’s consumption-led growth model is underpinned by a combination of rising house prices and a permissive credit regime. This growth model is supported by a dominant growth coalition of producer interests, elements of organised labour, and property owners. The growth coalition has been able to successfully generate growth model policy convergence between the mainstream political parties. In turn this growth model, and associated growth coalition, has undermined the pursuit of planetary health equity in Australia by incentivising and driving excessive consumption, greenhouse gas emissions, and economic inequality.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)273-287
    JournalNew Political Economy
    Volume29
    Issue number2
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2023

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