Where is Our Planetary Warehouse Manager?
I have argued before that the price of products should include the cost of returning the materials used to create the product to their natural state in order for market pricing pressures to evolve more environmentally friendly products. But there is another way that our ‘free market’ capitalism fails us when it comes to long term sustainability.
In the free market system products are generally priced on the current supply and demand, with most of the cost of a product representing the manufacturing process costs, along with overhead and profit margins. While AVAILABILITY of the finished good does come into play (such as a limited supply of gold or diamonds), the LONG TERM availability of the resource is more often ignored, as long as current market pressures can be satisfied.