The The Better Not Bigger Alliance Economy Platform
For the past thirty years, state and local governments have focused on policies intended to manage growth. The problem with this political philosophy is that Massachusetts cannot simply grow forever. At a certain point, growth causes more problems than it solves. Unfortunately, Massachusetts, and Eastern Massachusetts in particular, has long-passed that point. Once you reach the stage of overpopulation and overdevelopment, additional growth simply leads to higher taxes, fewer services and a lower quality of life for everyone. A sustainable economy is necessary to protect our environment, our financial resources and, perhaps most importantly, our quality of life.
A sustainable economy is relies on several key factors:
In other words, the economy must live within the means of its environment. When the economy grows too quickly, a recession follows and we are left simply with more people and infrastructure to support. A long-term, sustainable economy benefits everyone. A sustainable economy encourages entrepreneurship, through new technology and business processes, and helps to ensure that businesses have a stable, long-term customer base instead of volatile fluctuations. Accordingly, this makes planning on every level much easier. Towns are easily able to plan for the future based on a steady income, businesses are able to plan for inventory and infrastructure needs without waste, leading to increased profits and families are able to balance their own finances without worry of sharp economic downturns.
A great example of the benefits to a sustainable economy is the stable population of Massachusetts. Over the past 5-7 years, Massachusetts has been one of the only states with stable, even declining, population. This has led to a 2% decrease in energy demand and an energy surplus of almost 12%. If our population were to remain stable, Massachusetts would have no need for new power plants, leading to a cleaner, safer environment and a better quality of life for all residents.