Paying the Price for the Future We Want

One area where the IMF can help to promote sustainable development is by “getting the prices right.” Getting appropriate pricing means, for example, making sure that companies and individuals pay the true cost of polluting our planet. The best way to come up with the true costs is through fiscal instruments, such as environmental taxes or emissions trading systems where governments sell pollution rights, to reflect environmental damages in the prices we pay for energy, food, driving our cars, and so on. Getting the prices right should form the centerpiece of policies to promote green, or environmentally sustainable, development.