Since the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, more than 130 countries have created new bureaucracies to foster “sustainable development”—a buzz phrase many seem to favor yet few have tried to define. Unfortunately, in books by three of its chief theoreticians, the concept’s haziness masks impulses often at odds with rational environmental policies—and civil liberties.

Jacqueline R. Kasun (1924–2009) was Emeritus Professor of Economics at Humboldt State University.
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