This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Environmental Ethics Essay

2857 words - 11 pages

Our modern industrial society provides us with great physical and psychological comfort. We live not with a fear for our lives, we are politically stable and dominant; even the terrorist attacks against us cannot strip us of our safety bubble. We live with the luxury of convenience provided by our technologies, such as household appliances, personal computers, indoor heating and plumbing, personal automobiles with “endless fuel” the list is infinite. We live in a disposable society, where it is not commonplace to have material goods fixed, but rather replaced. We have disposable everything, diapers, water bottles, contacts, paintbrushes… again, our convenience is never-ending. This convenient lifestyle coupled with our massive desire for material goods has created immense devastation to the Earth. As time progresses we learn of more tragic outcomes of our lifestyles. I will discuss the major environmental tragedies that are facing our planet and possible solutions to the disasters. I will also give comparative thoughts by a handful of philosophers and dispute our moral obligations to the environment and for those whom occupy it. I feel that we need to do something soon to stop the destruction before it is too late.

First off, the biggest argument for preserving the environment would be; we have an obligation to future generations. Singer discusses these thoughts in his chapter on environmental ethics in his book, Practical Ethics. He begins with the assumption that people are self-interested, and while current philosophy and economics fail to present answers to the problem of obligations to future generations, we still have them. He recognizes that we do not know exactly what future people will cherish; will they choose to value computer games over nature walks? Regardless, Singer states, “We should preserve wilderness even though it is possible that future generations will care little for it. Thus we will not wrong future generations, as we have been wronged by members of past generations whose thoughtless actions have deprived us of the possibility of seeing such animals as the dodo, Steller’s sea cow, or the thylacine, the Tasmanian marsupial ‘tiger’. We must take care not to inflict equally irreparable losses on the generations to follow us.” (p.273)

Singer discusses the question of intrinsic value and to whom it pertains. Are humans the only sentient beings who have interests that matter or do we as a society also perceive value in non-human beings? To answer this, we need to examine the meaning of intrinsic value. Something of intrinsic value is good or desirable in itself and in contrast, instrumental value is a means to some other end or purpose. An example of intrinsic value would be our own happiness because we desire it for its own sake. Money, on the other hand, is of only instrumental value to us because we want it only for the thing we can buy with it.

With this in mind, Singer seems very realistic in the push...

Find Another Essay On Environmental Ethics

Kant's Principle and Environmental Ethics Essay

2096 words - 8 pages Kant's Principle and Environmental Ethics 1. All of the three approaches to environmental ethics use Kant's principle to various extents. The differences between them lie in their individual definitions of moral categories. It's like looking at the same slide under three different powers on a microscope. Each approach relies on Kant's principle to protect the interest of that which they deem worthy. Baxter's anthropocentric approach

Environmental Sciences and Ethics Paper-Exxon Valdez

1115 words - 4 pages long as the world thinks it needs oil for everyday life, there will always be a chance for another disaster like the Exxon Valdez or maybe the next one might be even worse.ReferencesOil on the Rocks. (n.d.). Watersheds 4: Ten Cases in Environmental Ethics, 4e Chapter 5. Retrieved June 22, 2007 from University of Phoenix https://ecampus.phoenix.edu/content/eBookLibrary/content/eReader.h?__VIEWSTATE=dDwxMTg1NzAxODY2Ozs%2BYllqqhPw%2F84%2F6r

Environmental Ethics

1275 words - 6 pages key factor for extreme weather and so, it is an issue that should be addresses. Works Cited Kohák, Erazim V. The Green Halo: A Bird’s-Eye View of Ecological Ethics. Translated by Erazim V. Kohák. Chicago and La Salle, IL: Open Court, 2000. Print. Irwin, Ruth. Climate Change and Philosophy: Transformational Possibilities (Continuum Studies in Philosophy). New York: Bloomsbury Academic, 2011. Print.

Environmental Ethics

773 words - 4 pages It has been suggested that Japan may not be effective in negotiating with the international community. I am here to put that assertion to rest. Japan, facing increasing incidences of daily maximum temperatures greater than 35C and a decrease in extremely low temperatures, recognizes that climate change affects all nations of the world, and that everyone has the duty to decrease the rate of climate change, if not counteract the effects

Advantages to a Rigorous Approach to Environmental Virtue Ethics

1854 words - 7 pages A good ethical theory requires both logical rigor and intuitive appeal to provide an effective tool for understanding what is right and what is wrong. In the field of environmental ethics, there has been significant scholarship in developing a duty ethics based on the inherent value of nature, most notably by Paul Taylor. Taylor indeed provides a logically clear argument for protecting the environment by building on the principles he calls the

Educational Literacy in the Context of Environmental Ethics

3559 words - 14 pages Educational Literacy in the Context of Environmental Ethics ABSTRACT: I explore the concept of literacy and the role it might play in environmental ethics. One of the goals of environmental ethics is to describe and contribute to the creation of an ecologically responsible culture. The creation of such a culture requires the development of knowledge and abilities that will help sustain such a culture. Since education is one of the key

Environmental Ethics : Learning, Questioning and Correcting Old and New Paths

2991 words - 12 pages IntroductionOne of the first lectures of this year described the complex idea of environmental ethics in a very simple way, by demonstrating how life was before environmental ethics it was clear to deduce that environmental ethics indeed does "involve the development of a new set of values in a world which is deeply anthropocentric. " Human practices have evolved, however, not in a very egalitarian manor over time. Values have relied heavily on

An applied environmental ethics 'case study on the Brazilian rainforest'

5842 words - 23 pages attempting to coerce other nations to do so.BibliographyCase, K and Fair, R. Principles of Economics. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 1989.Dillingham, C and Newton, L. Watersheds: Classic Cases in Environmental Ethics. California: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1994.Hargrove, E. Foundations of Environmental Ethics. New Jersey: Prentice Hall, 1989.Katz, E and Oechsli, L. 'Moving beyond anthropocentrism: Environmental ethics, development and the Amazon

From Western to Asian Environmental Ethics

3957 words - 16 pages vacua, but rather as multifold, interlinked, and dependent on a wide range or causal conditions. (While science also understands this theoretically, it tends to simplification for methodological purposes.) A reduced human hubris and a more holistic understanding of human health as well as environmental integrity is encouraged by a re-reading of Eastern medical models. When medicine is seen as a war on aging and disease, it is doomed to failure

Relationship Magnitude Paper: Write on the balance of human, animal and nature from a case study in "Watersheds 4: Ten Cases in Environmental Ethics". Case study Skunked was picked

850 words - 3 pages together to solve this issue albeit small in vision. The cost of fish will eventually rise to a competitive level like it did in Japan and this will be the price humans pay for not keeping the balance with nature.ReferencesDesJardins, J (2006). Environmental Ethics: An Introduction to EnvironmentalPhilosophy, 4e . Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, a division of Thomson Learning, Inc.Newton, L, Dillingham, C, & Choly, J (2006). Watersheds 4: Ten Cases inEnvironmental Ethics, 4e. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, a division of Thomson Learning, Inc. Wadsworth, a division of Thomson Learning, Inc. .

Climate justice and equitable funding

973 words - 4 pages One of the most effective definitions for environmental ethics is the definition of Rolston, (2011), that environmental ethics refers to theory and practice about the appropriate concern for, values in, and duties regarding the natural world. This book particularly supports the definition by offering a broader understanding of the framework convention on climate change (COP-15). The most important observation the author has made is that despite

Similar Essays

Environmental Ethics Essay

878 words - 4 pages PAGE PAGE 1 Ethics ENVIRONMENTAL ETHICSBy:SOC120SharonApril 26, 2010Environmental EthicsWith as much attention as the environment has been getting lately, you'd think that we'd be further along in our fight to preserve the world's species, resources and the beautiful diversity of nature. Unfortunately, things aren't nearly that rosy. In fact, many of the environmental problems that have received the most public attention are even worse than we

Environmental Ethics Inventory Essay

1136 words - 5 pages health, etc.This course has made me reflect upon the problems confronting those who have to make decisions about land, air, and water management and use. This course has furthered my understanding of the different approaches to environmental ethics and examination of the underlying assumptions of scientific, managerial, economic, aesthetic, political, judicial, and public policy discourse on the environment.My values and ethics regarding the

Darwin And Environmental Ethics Essay

3221 words - 13 pages Charles Darwin's theory of evolution has revolutionized the way humans look at science, religion, and an array of other areas of interest. The theory has yet to significantly impact the area of environmental ethics. To give a brief summary, his theory is dictated by the notion of natural selection, which according to Darwin "is daily and hourly scrutinizing, throughout the world, the slightest variations; rejecting those that are bad, preserving

Christians And The Environmental Ethics Essay

1196 words - 5 pages An environmentalist is a person worships the environment and cares for nature more than people. Christians and others share the common perception that environmental ethics exist for how human beings should relate to the land, the free market perceptive and the environmental perceptive. Humans share a relationship with all creations of the earth. But as humans, they find themselves as having a role in the created order which is they have a