environmental ethics topics
But our relation to the land, soil, plants and other creatures that are part of our biotic community remains an economic one. Most reject any nature–culture dualism, and many disavow anthropocentrism. This reform-oriented approach is grounded not in ultimate premises that plumb the relationship between humans and nature, but in technological optimism, economic progress, and scientific management. Stern et al. For Taylor, this means that living things have a good of their own that they strive towards, even if they lack awareness of this fact. 97–183). Thompson argues that ironically, any ‘statement that science is and must be value-free is amusingly self-contradictory, since it stipulates a norm for scientists at the same time that it denies the validity of norms’.12 And he rightly adds that agricultural science, much like medicine, has never been value-free. South American case studies illustrate routinized terra nullius prejudices. Overview. Yet, it has been found in sloganeering; in industrial agriculture, for example, in the maxim ‘get big or get out’; in the inappropriate transfer of technology to developing economies; and in research and extension initiatives in industrialised countries; even if politicians, economists and farmers alike know that ‘at some point production costs are bound to exceed the value of additional commodities produced’.5 As an ideology, it has also been found implicitly in ‘social policies, human organisation and cultural norms and has come to dominate agriculture in developed countries since World War II’.6 Thompson argues that we need to understand this ideology of productionism in agriculture as ‘a precondition for envisioning an environmentally responsible agriculture’.7 If this is true for agriculture, then it also applies to agricultural research – including food biotechnology and synthetic biotechnology – especially insofar as the products of that research are irreversibly applied or ‘released’ into the farm environment itself. (, Philosophy of Gender, Race, and Sexuality, Philosophy, Introductions and Anthologies. From this perspective, remedy for environmental problems is limited to economic, technological, and managerial reforms. This culminates in Leopold’s famous ethical injunction: “A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. An environmental ethic must become part of the ethical stance of agriculture and while it will not create, it will significantly aid the quest for, a sustainable system. Instead, it is argued that humans must recognize that they are part of nature, not distinct or separate from it. However, perhaps we do not have obligations to future people because there is no definitive group of individuals to whom such obligations are owed. The flourishing of human life and cultures is compatible with a substantially smaller population. Self-Validating Reduction: Toward a Theory of Environmental Devaluation. In addition, many thinkers would argue that rationalist thought is not the enemy, but instead the best hope for securing proper concern for the environment and for women. In other words deep ecologists do not offer one unified ultimate perspective, but possess various and divergent philosophical and religious allegiances. Un estudio de caso de investigación socio-ecológica realizado en Puerto Williams, Cabo de Hornos, revela que las personas pertenecientes a diferentes grupos socioculturales poseen una diversidad de perspectivas y relaciones con la naturaleza. Essay Review: No Longer a Stranger? Traditionally, environmental ethics has played a weak role in the disaster field but it is becoming much stronger for two reasons. In order to tackle just what our obligations are, it is usually thought necessary to consider first why we have them. For these thinkers, all animal-centered ethics suffer from two fundamental and devastating problems: first of all, they are too narrowly individualistic; and secondly, the logic of animal ethics implies unjustifiable interference with natural processes. Looking at sustainability provides an opportunity to map the points of divergence between production and conservation and to examine the possibilities for reintegrating these goals in the interests of human development and sustainability. Figure 9.11. The size of a population that can be sustained (the carrying capacity) and the average standard of living of the population are inversely related. Hille Haker, in Ethics for Graduate Researchers, 2013. There is, as mentioned at the beginning of this chapter, a disorienting array of interpretations of sustainability. Thinking About Nature: An Investigation of Nature, Value and Ecology. Section 3 explores Sartre’s perspectives on scientific inquiry, natural history, and dialectical reason. However, extending moral standing to animals also leads to the formulation of particular types of environmental obligations. Environmental ethics says that one should base their behavior on a set of ethical values that guide our approach toward the other living beings in nature. If agriculture and agricultural research are about production, productionism is the ‘philosophy that emerges when production is taken to be the sole norm for ethically evaluating agriculture’ and where the productionist criterion amounts to a principle that ‘more production is always better’.3 Productionism is an ideology and in fact immediately recognisable as a straw man; maximising production is not the longed-for goal of human existence, and farmers, producers and consumers cannot be reduced to rational maximisers. For one thing, in its refusal to reject so many worldviews and philosophical perspectives, many have claimed that it is difficult to uncover just what deep ecology advocates. promote dualisms that are responsible for the subjugation of women and nature? Thus, agricultural ethical debate is required to aid in decisions when there is tension between the imperative to produce and the values inherent in the need to conserve or protect the resource on which production depends. level of surveillance and intervention into nonhuman nature that constitutes a form of dependence. They too have interests and feelings, and can be hurt or benefited by what we do. of women and of nature, they instead emphasize those things that link women and the natural world. ...In our scenarios the expansion of population and physical capital gradually forces humanity to divert more and more capital to cope with the problems arising from a combination of constraints. Holistic entities may not have independent moral standing, according to these thinkers, but that does not equate to ignoring them. However, for Regan there are moral limits to what one can do to an entity with inherent value, irrespective of these overall consequences. In doing so we are valuing them for what they are. By way of reply to such problems, some philosophers have argued that while we do not know everything about future people, we can make some reasonable assumptions.
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