Some Ethical Principles
for Ecologically Sustainable
Public Policy

Timothy C. Weiskel
with eternal debt to the insight and analysis of

Herman Daly

       In our public and in our private lives we should always and everywhere seek in our personal and our collective behavior to act (eg. tax, spend, regulate, legislate and litigate, etc.) so as to:

  • substitute the consumption of non-renewable resources with renewable ones;

  • reduce the consumption of renewables to at or below their rate of renewal;

  • enter nothing into the waste/nutrient stream that cannot be "eaten" safely by another organism;

  • allocate the fruits of production in a more rather than less just and equitable fashion;

  • measure and monitor environmental conditions affecting the safety, health and welfare of all species;

  • educate and inform the public about the circumstances it must confront and the "footprint" it generates in the wider environment;

  • entitle and empower local communities to manage their resources sustainably; cajole, exhort and convince those who do not follow these precepts to mend the error of their ways;

  • expose, denounce, condemn and seek to punish those who consistently and intentionally violate these precepts of responsible ecocitizenry -- including those who otherwise wish to present themselves as perfectly "respectable" public leaders.