I just read that the average income of readers of Sierra Magazine is double the income of the average American. And this on the heels of a paper that shows the income elasticity of demand for environmental quality far exceeds one.
In laymen’s terms, what these mean is that a little richer is a heck of a lot better for the environment. In fact, a little poorer means a lot more environmental degradation. In slightly more technical terms for every increase in income by 10%, Americans increase their demand for environmental quality by much more than 10%. The politicos should keep this in mind in the era of high gas prices, windfall profits taxes, increased social security taxes, federal fiscal irresponsibility, etc.