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June 16, 2012
Business Leaders Call for Sustainable Economic Recovery
    by Robert Kropp

Members of the American Sustainable Business Council visit the White House for a summit in which they describe a market that accounts for externalities and benefits all participants.

At a summit held this week at the White House, members of the American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) conveyed to Administration officials their call for a growing economy compatible with shared prosperity and environmental stewardship.

ASBC, whose member organizations represent over 150,000 businesses as well as more than 300,000 entrepreneurs, owners, executives, investors, and business professionals, also published a letter detailing five core principles it deems necessary for a market-based economy structured "for the good of businesses, for all Americans, and for the seven billion other people who share this planet."

"Only through responsible and comprehensive change can we continue to enjoy the benefits of market capitalism while bringing its destructive tendencies to heel," the letter continued.

The core principles outlined in the letter include a market economy that accounts for environmental and social externalities; broad prosperity; sustainability; effective regulation; and a market that is accountable to all participants.

"An economy based on these principles would preserve the benefits of capitalism while gaining control over its destructive tendencies toward overuse of resources, instability, extremes of wealth and poverty, underdevelopment of human potential, and concentrations of power that suppress innovation," the letter concludes. "If we fail, it will be because we still had the chance to choose and we made the wrong choices. So let us choose wisely."

"Such sharing of perspectives" as the White House summit "is essential for creating public policy that actually benefits the small and medium size businesses that are delivering the most jobs," said Frank Knapp of the South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce. Knapp is also Vice-Chair of ASBC.

Earlier this year, ASBC applauded the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed standard for carbon pollution from new power plants. "A national standard to reduce carbon pollution from new power plants will both clarify risks and opportunities for US businesses, while also leading to technological innovation and investment in the domestic clean energy market," the organization and its partners stated.


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