ANIL AGARWAL, editor, Down To Earth
Two issues come to mind: one concerns resource use, the other concerns pollution and toxics. The pressure to generate foreign exchange will definitely have an impact on our land and forests. On the toxics side, liberalisation will mean that technology will come in without adequate checks. Economists tell us that the environment is an externality. The cost of damages is borne by future generations or by the powerless, namely the poor. Therefore, the argument is that we must internalise it. But any price is arrived at through negotiations between a buyer and a seller. In this case, who is the buyer of natural resources and who is the seller? We want more rapid growth. But who is going to control resources?