Green America: Rethinking the GDP

Green America: Rethinking the GDP

When the Commerce Department announced the nation’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) figures for the fourth quarter of 2008 at the end of January, they revealed a historical context for our economic slide – the 3.8% GDP shrinkage at the end of 2008 is the fastest pace for an economic slowdown in a quarter of a century.

Consumer spending, stated the Commerce Department, has fallen sharply, with big-ticket spending plunging even faster, falling off by 22% for the 2008 fourth quarter.

But what if the GDP – measuring the market value of a country’s economic output – isn’t the best indicator of societal well-being?

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