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Sociology and the Environment

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University of British Columbia
SOCI 100
Debra Pentecost

March 18, 2013 Sociology and the Environment Values - Is the environment part of the economy? Or - Is the economy part of the environment Environmental Paradigms - Dominant paradigm & alternative environmental paradigm (see table 16-1, p. 390) Dominant paradigm for recent centuries Anchored by 2 core values: 1) Material-wealth creation – economic growth 2) Humans have inalienable right to dominate nature – harness environment to that end  All major institutions reflect widespread acceptance of this paradigm Alternative Environmental Paradigm - Emphasize smaller-scale - Decentralized economic & political structures - In harmony with nature – delicate balance of ecosystems - Earth’s resources are limited - Little confidence in science & technology to come up with technological fix for material & energy shortages “Sustainable development” - Attempt to bridge differences between 2 paradigms “Development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” o Is this possible? o Can we achieve a new form of economic growth both environmentally aware and egalitarian? Environmental Attitudes & Concerns - Do pro-environmental attitudes convert
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