The two highlights are George Reisman's insightful refutation of resource doomsday-ism -- he points out that "the entire planet is a big ball of chemicals that, with the right technology, can be used to meet human wants ...for all practical purposes, [natural resources] are infinite"; (and this ain't just theory folks) -- and John Brätland's article on "sustainable development" which has just come online.
Brätland's article (pdf) deals with the economic theory of intergenerational sustainability, more popularly known as "sustainable development". The red flags pop up right away for Austrians with this description by a proponent:
Fundamentally, "sustainable development" is a notion of... disciplining our current consumption. This sense of "intergenerational responsibility" is a new political principle, a virtue that must now guide economic growth. The industrial world has already used so much of the planet’s ecological capital that the sustainability of the future is in doubt. That can’t continue.
Brätland's basic strategy is to deploy insights from the calculation argument against the neoclassical theory of Robert Solow and others. A few suggestive quotes from Brätland will, I hope, pique your interest in this excellent article:
The concepts of valuation, capital, and income only take on valid or coherent meaning in the context of individual action, private property and market exchange... The critical goal of legitimate sustainability is to establish an expanded system of private property rights that allows the owners to manage resources as capital assets. (p. 21)
...the ethics underlying the acquisition of private property is not even acknowledged in the economics of intergenerational sustainability. The entire resource base of the world’s society is implicitly under the control of some government making allocative decisions. (p. 22)
Without private property, monetary exchange, and capital accounting, no rational economics of asset maintenance could exist... The extent that individual business plans may conflict and be incapable of mutual success creates a barrier to aggregation or "macro-reckoning." Hence, society or a government as its agent has no aggregated measure of capital for which it can legitimately presume to make decisions. (pp. 28,29)
...public control of resources in the name of "sustainability" is not only contradictory but also self-defeating. (p. 41)
LINKS: Austrian Economics Study Guide: Natural sciences and the environment - Mises Institute
Environmentalism refuted - George Reisman, Mises Economics Blog
Toward a calculational theory and policy of intergenerational sustainability - John Brätland, Quarterly Journal of Austrian Economics [34-page PDF]
RELATED: Politics-NZ, Environment, Philosophy, Ethics