When it comes to business, it may seem as though unrestricted and unrestrained businesses are those with the potential to provide the biggest boost to the economy. However, with proper and common-sense environmental regulations in place, the economy can grow at an even faster pace and, thanks to the inherently health-protecting nature of environmental conservation, boost the health of the local community, as well. Here are a few ways this process takes place.
Some environmental business regulations require changes in the way a company practices its trade. Whether it’s a utility company that has to produce power using a different method or a mining company that has to end its current mining practices, these changes can seem devastating at first. However, instead of an end, these regulations can be seen as a beginning, with the ability to spur innovation that may not have occurred otherwise. This new innovation creates new jobs and, as a result, helps boost the economy.
Lower Healthcare Costs
Many times, changing environmental regulations are required to protect the health of the general public. By the time an environmental law practice gets involved, the costs of a specific business practice to the health of the public are generally widely understood. By enacting common-sense regulations that seek the long-term viability of all parties involved, the overall health of the surrounding population can be improved. This allows for lower healthcare costs, which leaves more money for consumer spending, which is a major driver of the economy.
Another problem that arises from some business practices is that it damages the natural beauty of the area around the business’s physical operations. This diminished beauty can lead to reduced tourism, especially in areas where few other tourist attractions exist. With proper regulations in place, though, the natural beauty of an area can be protected. This preserves the base level of tourism that is currently in place and may even bring in additional tourists who come to celebrate the changes taking place.
Improved Economic Outlook
Due to changing consumer habits, some industries have found themselves in a natural state of decline. For the employees of these industries, the prospects of losing their job due to lower revenue can be a scary prospect. In towns where there are only one or two major employers, the loss of an employer who has run afoul of environmental regulations may cause disastrous health consequences for those who find themselves newly unemployed. If a business can attempt to work within the constraints of environmental regulations, though, they may find that they come back into favor with consumers, thus avoiding the closure of the business in a particular location.
Give and Take
As with any situation in which multiple opinions are present, environmental regulations are an important process of give and take. To be sure, a business doesn’t want to agree to such strict environmental regulations that the cost of complying with those regulations puts them out of business. At the same time, if a business can find a healthy compromise between all parties, it could help it succeed and thereby boost the economy for years to come.
Author: Brooke Chaplan
Image: The Bosco Verticale residential towers in Milan, Italy. Chris Barbalis/Unsplash