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Department
Philosophy
Course
PHIL 1180
Professor
Ronald Sandler
Semester
Spring

Description
Enviro Ethics notes 1/10 Review from previous class: 1. Questions • Humans have more highly developed brains: Allows for high capacity in realizing our ability to change the future - Allows for technology - Most importantly, allows for culture to develop new ideas and technologies. • Being unique is not unique to us -All animals have specializations • Values • Principles - Allowed by values • Implications 2. Method • Philosophical method - Allows for justification of ideas and analyzation of justification. Notes: Nature • Very ambiguous. Different varieties. 1- Descriptive: Not wearing makeup, anything w/o human intervention, natural foods - Not evaluative - Not normative - Separate from humans - not artificial - Following physics (in this sense everything is natural) - not supernatural - Biotic world (living thing to be natural) -So what is the "right" descriptive term of natural? - Sandler: no right one, just pick one and stick with it - Lets not get caught up, just use whatever definition is best in the context. - In this course: Nature is separate from humans - To the extent that it is independent from human design, control and impacts. Everything comes in degrees 2- Evaluative/Value: To conote goodness. Advertising, purity. 3- Normative: Indicate what we should do. - Following nature, nature as a guide. - ought nought interfere with nature. - unnatural = wrong Readings • Mills - Anti Normative (3) Argument: Says that the idea that we should imitate nature is ridiculous. Nature is brutal. And if we don't follow it. Then nature isn't our guide. - Fallacy of Appeal to Nature: When somebody says, "We ought to do that, because it occurs in nature," it's ridiculous. - Emerges from the idea that we should not take nature as a normative guide. • Vogel - Confronts the idea that we shouldn't interfere with nature. - If we are nature, then everything we do is natural - If we are not nature, then nothing we can do can be natural - Purpose of ethics is to decide what and what not to do. ************************************************************************************* ************************************************************************************* *************************************** Enviro Ethics notes 1/14 Review from previous class: Nature - Descriptive - Value - Prescription/normative: - Imitate/follow nature. - Mills' argument is against this idea. Fallacy of appeal to nature. - Predation is nightmarishly common in nature. - Don't interfere with nature - If this is the case, then all technology is bad - Vogel says that this description is not useful, as it has absurd implications. - Natural = right, unnatural = wrong. - • Lets be clear about our definition about nature, and use which definition is most clear in the situation under question. • For this class nature is independent of human design and impacts. - Katz uses a similar description • Can we appeal to nature to find out what's natural or right? Notes: Justifications for Environmentalism: 1. Boomerang: We should care about the environment for us. - Because it would be bad for us if we don't. 2. Benefit: There is a benefit to engaging in the natural world. - There are benefits to being politically active. 3. Other: There are things in the natural world that we should care for, for their sake. - Sometimes it will be other animals, or systems. Values in nature that are independent of us. - Question in ethics: Are there these values? What is their claim on us? • Appealing to nature generally leads to logical fallacies. Natural Value: A place has value in its virtue of independence from humans. - Sometimes things have value because of their history. Replication Argument: - Katz: Things have value because of their naturalness. ************************************************************************************* ************************************************************************************* *************************************** Enviro Ethics notes 1/17 Review from previous class: • Nature as Normative - Defined nature as anything that is natural to the extent it is free from human control. - Normative because of its guiding our sense of what to do. - But should we do that? Nature is brutal. - Fallacy of appeal to nature. - It is right because it does appear or wrong because it does not appear. - Nature hanged terms through the argument • Value - Human orientated (Anthropocentric): Values that are connected in some way to us. - Natural environment provides things that we need. - Or the boomerang justification. - Ways in which nature enriches us. - Recreation, renewal, gaining knowledge. - Other orientated (Non Anthropocentric): Things in nature are valuable, independent of us and what they do to us. - Some thing wildness is valuable. Others think animals. Other environment. Others beauty. Etc Etc. - The two are not mutually exclusive. • Natural Value- Places have value because of their growth from man. - Replication argument. Notes: • Agriculture- is the biggest use of land in the world, 38%. - We produces 25% of crop growth in the world. • Habitat destruction- is the biggest cause of species extinction. • Climate Change- During Industrial revolution the CO2 gas ppm was 285. 2012 was 395 ppm. Highest green house gases have been in 16 million years - Solar energy comes in at high frequency wave length. The heat waves don't leave because they are long wave length. • Global Climate Change (GCC): - Wide variety of possible environmental futures. - Widespread disruption of ecological relationships. - Emergence of novel systems- Environments that are more and more unique. • Challenge of Adaption- GCC makes adaption to ecological changes more and more difficult for us and other species. - This is what causes species extinction. - Mountain species- High climate species can't go any further up. - Arctic Species- Can't go any "higher' latitude wise. - Fresh water species- Stuck in their pond. • 15-37% of species will be committed to extinction by 2050 on mid- level emissions scenarios. • 20-30% of species likely to be increased risk of extinction on lower- emissions scenarios, with 40-70% extinctions predicted on upper level. - Normal is .0001% is the 'natural' extinction rate. • Species Conservation Dilemma- The goal of species conservation is increasingly threatened by GCC. - Traditional species conservation strategies - reserve-orientated preservation and ecological restoration - are increasingly undermined by global climate change. - We will be unable to 'recreate' the habitat as the entire habitat is no longer suited to the animal. - Can't preserve species where they are. - This would imply that we would need to perform assisted colonization. - Rewiring of ecosystems. Intentionally creating a non native species population. - Goes against all history of environmental management. ************************************************************************************* ************************************************************************************* *************************************** Enviro Ethics notes 1/17 Review from previous class: • Natural Value: • Climate Change- Dilemma is that more species than ever are faced with extinction. • Conservation Biology Dilemma- The strategies depend on the future being like the past. Ecological conditions are actually changing. - To get around this, Assisted Colonization is employed, and making the old ecosystem into something cool (Rewilding). - Can also change your goals. Shift strategies away from species conservation efforts. Keep alive using ex situ (zoos etc). • Ecosystem Management: 1- Parks and Reservers: Have an area in which there are designations for what people can and can't do. - For places which are high in value, ecological integrity that human activities would mess up. 2- Ecological Restoration: Human assisted recover of a space that includes elements that would have been without human degradation. Helping it rejuvenate. - Specifically returning things of the past. Notes: • Assisted Colonization: In effect would be producing a non native species population. Ironic because that's what environmentalists have been fighting against for forty years. - Another argument against it is that it's not the parts that matter, but the species. - Biodiversity is coming into tension with species integrity. Something that has never happened because in the past they have always gone hand in hand. • Anthropocene: It's a new age of natural history. The Human Age. - Oftentimes this term is used to draw attention to the huge amount of impacts we've had. - People like the attitude of 'if you break it you buy it'. If we are in charge we need to fix it. - Other believe it is tragic, and we should scale back. - GeoEngineering: Do we need to intentionally change the environment to fix it? • Value: Is the value of species valued over the value of historical integrity? - Which values are there and what strategies are effective in protecting and promoting them. - Two types of values: Human centered and Non Human Centered (Anthropocentric and Non-Anthro) • Taylor: - Terminology: - Moral Patient- Anything that is morally considerable. Are there any non human moral patients in nature? - Morally Considerable- If its interests or good need to be considered in our ethical deliberations. 1- Direct: For yourself or for its own sake. 2- Indirect: If its moral considerability is connected to something that is morally considerable. - The issue is if they are directly considerable. - Moral Agents- Entities capable of moral thought, deliberation and action. Can be held morally responsible for what they do. - All moral agents we know of now are homo sapiens. - Conditional Value- When something's value depends on something else. - Instrumental Value- Something valuable as part of a means to an ends. Conditionally valuable. - Final Value- Valuable in itself in some way. Non instrumental. - Subjective: Something can have final value because it is valued by people in that way. - Sentimentally valuable. Conditionally valuable. - Objective: When an entity has value, when the value is nondependent upon us valuing it. - People for example. People have value even if nobody likes them and they have no instrumental value. - Unconditional. ************************************************************************************* ************************************************************************************* *************************************** Enviro Ethics notes 1/23 Review from previous class: • Value: - Rationalism - Sentimentalism - Biocentrism - Ecosystems - Species • Value Terminology: - Instrumental- Valuable because its worth something to us. - Final- Value because it is seen as being valuable within itself • Subjective- Conditional. - The 'Oobooroo' rock is given. Has no tattle value, but valuable as a spiritual center in Australia. • Objective- Unconditionally valuable. The most important kind of value. • Taylor- Says all things have an inherent worth, and we should care about those things. - Uses intrinsic value and inherent value. • Intrinsic- Related to experiences that we find pleasurable and meaningful. The outcome isn't valuable so much • Moral Agents- Only human beings are moral agents (but not all human beings.) • Moral Patients/Subjects- Things that moral agents have to care about. - Have value. Notes: • Taylor- Argues for biocentrism in a very structured view. - In his view, the way you defend an ethic, is first done by defending a world view. - Then look at what outlooks work best with that world view. • Biocentric Outlook- Argues for this being the best understanding of our relationship with our natural environment. • Attitude of Respect For Nature (ARN)- The values that fall in line with the belief system. All living things have inherent worth. • Ethical System- Rules and principles that embody the values. - Talks about what the implications. • Implications- What we should do about this outlook. • How Taylor Sees our Ethics- Belief system, implies an Attitude of Respect for People. -
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