Envionmental Responsibility

Topics: Poverty, Environment, Environmentalism Pages: 4 (923 words) Published: December 11, 2014
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Should Rich Countries Pay More For Environmental Damage?
Environmental damage is something that has no boundaries. Therefore, an environmentally damaging activity is not bound within the region or area it has occurred only, but rather the impacts spread far and wide. The issue of whether rich countries should contribute more towards environmental remediation and conservation efforts is largely based on this. The point is that whether such damaging activities to the environment occur in either rich or poor nations, the impacts are shared across the board. Out of this, the main contention is responsibility. Who, between the rich and poor nations, is responsible for environmental degradation and thus who bears the greatest responsibility in addressing the damage? To start with, rich countries, despite their lower population as compared to the poor countries, have higher consumption rates than poor countries. They consume more resources and at a faster rate than poor countries. This is so as to feed and provide for their high-consumption lifestyles which are not found in poor nations. These resources include; food, energy, and water, all of which are essential for sustenance of life in both sides of the wealth divide. This higher consumption rates of the rich countries lead to depletion of resources, causing the unjust suffering of the poor countries as they have to deal with the shortage of these vital resources. Secondly, the higher rate of consumption results to higher rate and volume of wastes produced. These wastes may range from biodegradable to non-biodegradable, and at times toxic. Because of this high waste generation, some of the rich countries dump these wastes into poor countries, either maliciously or through deceit. They export wastes to poor countries in exchange for money, thereby taking advantage of the poverty in these poor countries. A good example is the e-dumping where electronic devices such as computers,...
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