Foundations covers well-trodden ground in debates about Foundations covers familiar ground in debates about environmental economics, environmental ethics and climate justice. Its main value is in providing a stark, but sophisticated defense of a particular worldview, albeit with a specific twist and a few unorthodox suggestions of its own. While Heath’s position is controversial—even extreme—in various ways, sharing the journey with him is a useful, informative, and engaging experience.

Heath argues for a position he labels “economism”: “The basic conceptual apparatus and normative approach being used by climate economists, such as William Nordhaus and Nicholas Stern, is correct.” In terms of substantive climate policy, he endorses conventional, market-based cost-benefit analysis (MCBA), a positive social discount rate (2–3 percent), and pronounced optimism about rapid economic growth even as climate change accelerates. In the realm of theory, he maintains that the climate problem should be understood through the concepts of the prisoner’s...

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