ES lab 4 individual.docx

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Environmental Studies
Edmund Okoree

In the Mackenzie gas project, the precautionary principle is used to determine strategies and policies that would minimize the potential negative environmental and social issues around the project. For example, when Mr. Justice Thomas Berger looked in depth into the issues involved with the project, he brought attention to the numerous ways the project could cause harm to both humans and the environment. His recommendations on how to build the pipeline were precautionary in nature; they aimed to minimize all damages he thought were a possibility even if he did not have all the information on the cause and effect. Another example of how the precautionary principle was used in this project is in the news report, “Panel warns of Mackenzie pipeline damage; Report foresees hundreds of wells drilled in NWT” by Dave Ebner. The Canadian Arctic Resources committee conducted research that suggested the environment of Canada’s last wild frontier may be damaged and voiced their opinion that uncontrolled development of the north will cause unnecessary damage. The article also explained that Imperial Oil must provide more information on the impact of this project in order to move forward. This article is one of many outlets that provided valuable information to direct the way the project would be enacted. For example, policies regarding strict control of the project may be created to address these environmental concerns. Throughout the media storm surrounding the project, there were numerous distresses raised by stakeholders, citizens and government officials. These worries would have been central in enacting policies and determining the best alternatives to continue forth with this project. The integrative principle focuses on managing all problems and is a principle that would likely come into play when deciding how to address the most precautionary concerns possible. The Mackenzie gas project would have used this principle to find the most sustainable methods while meeting all biophysical, socio-political and economic needs of those involved. Stakeholders such as the major oil companies may have used this principle to ensure that the initial concerns of all parties are addressed as much as possible. They may have focused on their main interests; the economic gain and need for natural gas and also looked for ways to integrate other needs such as reducing poverty, minimizing damage on the environment and the well-being of the people involved. Processes and policies would focus on systematic integration to ensure happiness of as many parties involved as possible. For example, these oil companies may focus on controlled development and highlight that the pipeline will decrease poverty and unemployment for the surrounding community. The participatory principle is one that focuses on the involvement of citizens in environmental policies. This principle was seen in action with the Berger Commission. This commission gave communities directly involved an opportunity to voice their opinion and let the government hear their opinions when enacting policies. As stated above, the findings from the Berger Commissio
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