Brief explanation on environmental ethics at A2

Environmental ethics

  • Created by: Amira
  • Created on: 14-05-12 12:46

The main focus is on the approaches to the environment that various theories have.  This includes several new theories which just deal with the environment.  You will need to evaluate the effectiveness of theories in terms of how well they motivate people and how many people they can apply to in addition to the usual ways of evaluating such as the ease of following or whether the theory produces any major problems for the environment.   You may also want to consider the extent to which views can be described as theocentric, biocentric or anthropocentric and how this may make a view more or less useful.

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1.  Religious ethics in this case is Christianity.  The main focus here is Stewardship and the idea that we are to look after the world for God.  They also consider the world to have value as God’s creation which provides for us, but must be protected.  Caring for the world helps correct the relationship with God that was damaged by Adam and Eve.  You should be able to refer to the Bible though do not need to quote it directly.  You could mention how God made the world and saw that it was good, that he placed man in the garden to care for it and that ultimately the world and everything on it belongs to God.  You will need to balance this out by considering the idea of dominion and the issues raised by Rapture Christians.  If you can use it appropriately there’s even the flood which raises concerns about the world.

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2.       Libertarian extension is the principle that the right to life is extend to other life forms, not just humans and see all life as having intrinsic.  An example you have learnt for this is Deep Ecology.  You should know had far they extend this rate and what they suggest humans do in order to secure this right. 

3.       Eco holism (ecological extension) sees the world in a collective way rather than as individual life forms.  It sees the value of species in the way they contribute to the whole, such as an ecosystem.  Gaia hypothesis was the example of this type of approach.

4.       Conservation ethics takes a very human centred views and calls for the preservation of the world on the grounds that if we don’t, we will suffer.  The world is given extrinsic value as it is of benefit to us.

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