• Allied with the moral imperative of material wealth is the conviction that humans have a right
and even a responsibility to dominate nature.
-economic growth has supplementary value: society is best organized on a large-scale, centralized basis,
respect for authority, the ascendancy of law and order, and confidence in science and technology
-alternative environmental paradigm value the natural environment, resources must be conserved
-E.F Schumacher believe ‘small is beautiful’-society should adopt small-scale, decentralized economic
and political structures that are in harmony with nature.
BRIDGING THE GAP?
• Major attempt to bridge differences between the two paradigms is located in idea of sustainable
Economic development that meets needs of present without compromising ability of future
generations to meet their own needs
• Proponents argue is possible to have continued economic growth without harming the
But many environmentalists are critical of concept, emphasizing difficulty in maintaining balance
between economic growth and environmental sustainability*
o Idea of sustainable development arose out of 1987 report of the United Nations World
Commission on Environment and Development, more commonly known as the Brundtland
o This report foresaw a new form of economic growth, especially for developing nations, that
would be both environmentally aware and egalitarian, integrating objectives for social
development with the demands of science
o It suggested it is possible to have economic growth but not at the expense of the environment
o Critics of sustainable development point out the it requires an extraordinary degree of
cooperation and a deep commitment to reform
o This is difficult to achieve, especially in nations of the Southern hemisphere, where rural
economies are often still controlled by wealthy landowners, and the poor are forced to engage
in ecologically damaging practices, such as stripping the rapidly dwindling forests for cooking
fuel in order to survive
ENVIRONMENTAL ATTITUDES, CONCERNS, AND BEHAVIOURS
• Are three methods for measuring people’s environmental view of the world:
1. Utilize new environmental paradigm (NEP) scale (12 items that measures respondents’ extent of
agreement with various statements)
2. Ask respondents how worried or upset they are regarding series of environmental problems
3. Ask respondents to weigh tradeoffs between, for example, environmental protection and jobs*
AVERAGE SCORES ON THE NEW ENVIRONMENTAL PARADIGM SCALE
o One of the first and most important efforts to develop a research tool with which to measure an
environmental view of the world was Dunlap and Van Liere’s (1978) new environmental
paradigm (NEP) scale.
o Using survey data from two samples of Washington state residents and from the membership of
a statewide environmental organization, Dunlap and Van Liere developed a 12-item scale that
measures the extent of agreement with such statements as “the balance of nature is very
delicate and easily upset” and “humans need not adapt to the natural environment, because
they can remake it to suit their own needs” (see Table 16.2).