Environmental Worldviews, Ethics, and Sustainability

Page 1 of 4

Environmental Worldviews, Ethics, and Sustainability

By | October 2012
Page 1 of 4
ENVIRONMENTAL WORLDVIEWS, ETHICS, AND SUSTAINABILITY
Chapter 28

BIOSPHERE 2
• Biosphere 2, was designed to be self sustaining life-supporting system for eight people sealed in the facility in 1991. The experiment failed because of a breakdown in its nutrient cycling systems. ENVIRONMENTAL WORLDVIEWS AND VALUES

• Environmental Worldviews include:
• How you think the world works.
• What you believe your environmental role in the world should be. • What you believe is right and wrong environmental behavior. INSTRUMENTAL AND INTRINSIC VALUES
• Instrumental (utilitarian)
• A value something has because of its usefulness to us or to the biosphere • i.e. preserving natural capital and biodiversity • Intrinsic (inherent)
• The value something has just because it exists regardless of whether it has any instrumental value to us. CLASSIFYING WORLDVIEWS
• Worldviews are generally divided into two groups:
• Holistic (Ecocentric) is earth centered and focuses on sustaining the earth’s • Natural systems (ecosystems)
• Life-forms (biodiversity)
• Life-support systems (biosphere)
• For all species
• Atomistic is individual centered
• Anthropocentric (human-centered)
• Biocentric (life-centered)
ANTHROPOCENTRIC, BIOCENTRIC, AND ECOCENTRIC
• Anthropocentric (human-centered)
• No-problem school (all problems solved), free-market school (global economy), responsible school (mix of previous 2) • Instrumental values play a larger role.
• Biocentric (life-centered)
• Human as one with the earth
• Aldo Leopold and John Muir
• Intrinsic values play a larger role
• Ecocentric (earth-centered)
• Humans destroy the earth
• Emerson, Thoreau, Aldo Leopold, John Muir, Rachel Carson • Environmental...