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This book builds an essential bridge between climate change and social policy. Combining ethics and human need theory with political economy and climate science, it offers a long-term, interdisciplinary analysis of the prospects for sustainable development and social justice. Beyond ‘green growth’ (which assumes an unprecedented rise in the emissions efficiency of production) it envisages two further policy stages vital for rich countries: a progressive ‘recomposition’ of consumption, and a post-growth ceiling on demand.


Published by Edward Elgar Publishing Ltd in hardback, paperback and electronic format

Electronic version (chapter one free to access) 

Critical Acclaim

"There are few scholarly books about climate change that take the issue of the distribution of its costs, and of the costs and benefits of its mitigation, as seriously as their absolute value. This is probably the best of those books that I have come across. Rigorously rooted in Gough’s earlier work on theories of human need, the book is relentless in its pursuit of equity in respect of climate change and responses to it. Not everyone will agree with all its conclusions – for example that “green capitalism merits the term ‘contradiction’” – but they are unfailingly thought-provoking, as all good scholarship should be. Highly recommended."

Paul Ekins, UCL Institute for Sustainable Resources, UK


Ian Gough's latest book is required reading for anyone who wants to understand the enormity of the task at hand

International Dialogue 2018

'In this wonderful book, Ian Gough shows how we can deal with climate change sensibly, by developing eco-social policy that promotes human wellbeing. The result is a tour de force.'

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