Common law has made significant allowances for IP. Not to the draconian measure that copyright takes it, but reasonable protection to allow investors the opportunity to recoup the costs of R&D.
It’s also worth pointing out that environmental concerns were actually being addressed organically by the market before government got involved. For example, in the case of an internal combustion engine, engineers want a perfect burn. This lets them get the maximum power from each ounce of fuel, which gives better mileage, which is a desirable trait. A perfect burn produces H2O and CO2. Neither of these are pollutants. Plants actually generally grow better in concentrations of CO2 that are much higher than what we currently have.
There’s currently a company working on nuclear technology that could provide cheaper electricity than coal does and do it with nearly zero waste (and no atmospheric emissions, even in the case of a metldown).