For instance, does biotechnology with potential to create new species, or bring back an extinct species, relieve us of the duty to conserve the biodiversity?
Or alternative sources of fuel give us a right to deplete the natural fuel reserve? Is there any way that nature can take care of itself without our hand, like self renewal? The main issue surrounding environmental ethics today is the activist movements on environmental protection that focus people on the wrong issues, that is the moral standing is more emotional than factual or logical. The following are essential in discussing environmental ethics and policies. Western Religion and Culture It has been viewed by some philosophers that the Western religion has adversely affected the environment as it teaches that human beings have dominion over the earth and subdue it.
Others view this as a command to take care of nature as we have been left in charge. To address this sensitive topic, religion should be understood in context. Is it logical to still apply the very same principles now as they did then? The culture of a people defines how they relate to and use the environment.
Many of the historic events that shape the western culture have had a huge impact on the environment. Events such as the industrial revolution, technological advances and the modern culture have affected the environment. Culture can easily adapt to changing environments, as well as cause permanent change to different environments. The environment is very wide and continuous, while the environment defines cultural practices. Therefore it is ethical to put environment before culture, and change current lifestyles towards more nature friendly practices.
The future generation Most of the damage to the environment is more likely to affect the future human population. This therefore calls on the currently living humans to consider the rights of those who are not yet born. We might not know exactly what that generation will require but we are well aware of the basic needs of living beings; food shelter and basic health.
Based on these we can have a model of what the environment should offer the future human beings. Therefore it is our moral obligation to them to utilize nature as much as we need to but ensure that we do not deny them the enjoyment of the same.
Animals Other animals should be considered when addressing environmental ethics, since they are sentient beings, that is are capable of feeling. Although animals come after humans, they have rights and should be considered according to what they are interested in, such as feeding, living in their natural habitat, and allowed their existence. Controversy about animal rights arises in what animals exactly should we grant rights to.
For instance, are insects or other smaller animals in this category? Is it right to use animals for laboratory research for medical and other studies to better our lives? The simple answer to this question is that unless it is extremely necessary, animals should not be put at risk or in adverse conditions. The harm to animals should be justified and be limited to a certain allowable level.
Ecofeminism Women are seen to be closer and more in touch with nature; this is claimed by feminists concerned with the environment Cochrane, This is because of their ability to give life, and the fact that the earth is considered female Shiva, Thus this gives them a better understanding of nature and how to coexist in harmony.
Some of them are specific questions faced by individuals in particular circumstances, while others are moral global questions faced by groups and communities.
Yet others are more abstract questions concerning the value and moral standing of the natural environment and its nonhuman components. In the literature on environmental ethics the distinction between instrumental value and intrinsic value meaning non-instrumental value has been of considerable importance. The former is the value of things as means to further some other ends. In the same way, I also have my own values and ethics regarding environmental issues that define my responsibility to the natural environment.
Although at times I can violate these values when the situation proves to be challenging, I nevertheless hold them in high steem. All too often human beings view nature and natural system as a pleasant surrounding for their leisure time or a resource for economic activity.
This is a dangerous point of view since it leads to the destruction of natural habitats through over-using, rampant pollution, depletion of resources, and the extinction of wild flora and fauna. I believe that people in their activities should recognize preservation of natural systems as an important priority that has to be considered Along with economic efficiency and at times even override it.
The Earth has suffered too much from the influence of humans, and it is time to give it a rest and let it recuperate from the damage. Accordingly environmental problems will consist in problems either for human interest or for the interest of the non-human animals, and an acceptable environmental ethic would have this individual interest as its grounds. Indeed those who believe that only sentient or conscious creatures have interest and that having interest is necessary for warranting moral consideration will hold that nothing else has interest on witch environmental problems could turn.
Problems for ecosystems are thus held to turn invariably on the interest of sentinel or conscious individuals, and within such and ethic, priority is liable to be placed on averting, suffering premature death for vulnerable individuals, whether is best done by the introduction of humane methods of farming, by abstaining from eating meat by curtailing human interventions in the natural order, or even possibly by intervening to reduce the suffering inflicted by predators on prey.
The defining of it may be difficult, but the idea that humans moving through the environment should leave as small a footprint as possible is important. How and who decides what should be done should be left up to the experts in the filed, but it is important that all ethics concerning the environment are given the greatest platform possible.
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Environmental ethics studies the effects of human’s moral relationships on the environment and everything within it (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ). The .
Ethics arise not simply from man's creation but from human nature itself making it a natural body of law from which man's laws follow. Good ethics allow one to do what is right in the absence of written rules or guidelines.. Environmental ethics have no precisely fixed conventional definition in glossaries or dictionary terminology/5(10).
Environmental ethics is the part of environment philosophy which considers extending the traditional boundaries of ethics from only including hum and to non-humans. There are many ethical decisions that human beings make with respect to the environment. Environmental Ethics Essay - Ethics is the study of what is right and wrong in human conduct. Environmental ethics studies the effects of human’s moral relationships on the environment and everything within it (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ).
In the s, philosophers began to formulate a new field called ‘Environmental Ethics’. Environmental ethics asks about the moral relationship between humans and the world around as; in contrast to traditional ethics, which . In the literature on environmental ethics the distinction between instrumental value and intrinsic value(meaning non-instrumental value) has been of considerable importance. The former is the value of things as means to further some other ends.