University of Vermont

Gund Institute for Ecological Economics

Vermont Public Radio on Irene, Ecosystem Services and Gund’s Vermont Genuine Progress Indicator

Are storms and hurricanes good for the economy? Listen to Louis Porter's recent VPR commentary on how areas with relatively intact floodplains faced fewer devastating impacts from Irene compared to more developed areas.

Gund’s Eric Zencey spoke to the Lake Champlain Lakekeeper, Louis Porter, about flaws in the current economic accounting system. With this system, Irene’s destruction counts as positive economic growth in Vermont, while the economic benefits provided by intact floodplains aren’t quantified and therefore not counted. Porter concludes his commentary by emphasizing the how the Gund Institute’s work on Vermont’s Genuine Progress Indicator provides alternative measures that address these issues and gives the general public and policy makers a more accurate accounting of Vermont’s economy.