Name: Phuong Loan Dang
Student ID: 2129346
Topic: Managing Environment GE
Essay topic: What is Environmental Management?
Rapid economic development and improper management of natural resources have caused serious environmental problems. Therefore, environmental management (EM) is imperative. Definitions of EM vary as it is a broad field and involvement of many specialisms. However, it is necessary to deeply understand “what is EM” to study, research and manage environment in an effective and sustainable manner. Thus, this essay is going to examine interpretations of what EM means. To begin with, EM is a state-centred process relating developing and implementing environmental laws, policies and regulations. Barrow (1999) synthesizes EM concepts from 1990’s “green development” sources and concludes that EM is a decision-making process regulating the human impacts on the environment in such a manner that the environment capacity to sustain human development will be unimpaired. In this case, governments play a vital role in managing most of human activities to ensure that their impacts on environment are at the acceptable level. In every country, legislation, policies are developed by governments, for example, environment law, biodiversity law, directives, etc. However, in reality governments are not the ones involved in EM because EM is not only to ‘solve the environmental problems by simply adding a few new directives” (European Comission n.d). In a broader scope, EM demands multidisciplinary approach. Thomas (2004) points that there are three main groups involving in EM including politics and management; science; and the public which ‘must work in partnership with involvement in planning, information assessment and exchange, and in ongoing management activities’. Thanks to this co-ordination, these three groups achieve their individual purposes. For instance, an effective public policy in EM requires extensive use of scientific methods to assess a...
References: Barrow, C. 2006, Environmental management for sustainable development, Routledge.
Barrow, C.J. 1999, Environmental management: principles and practice, Psychology Press.
Giddings, B., Hopwood, B. & O 'brien, G. 2002, 'Environment, economy and society: fitting them together into sustainable development ', Sustainable Development, vol. 10, no. 4, pp. 187-96.
O 'Riordan, T. 1995, Environmental science for environmental management, Longman Group Limited.
Thomas, R.L. 2004, 'Management of freshwater systems: the interactive roles of science, politics and management, and the public ', Lakes & Reservoirs: Research & Management, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 65-73.
European Commission n.d, What is EM, viewed 12 March 2014,
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