IDSB04H3 Chapter Notes - Chapter 10: Deoxygenation, Overgrazing, Municipal Solid Waste


Department
International Development Studies
Course Code
IDSB04H3
Professor
Anne- Emanuelle Birn
Chapter
10

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Chapter 10 HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Describe how deforestation increases health risks
Intensive
logging and the clear cutting of forests for construction
materials, harvesting timber, charcoal fuel for
domestic use, and the expansion of living and agricultural
space have led to massive deforestation in recent
decades. poor planning, carelessness, drought, and
inadequate fire fighting have worsened the situation.
This loss disproportionately affects LMICs, such
as Haiti, which has lost over 80% of its original forest
cover, leading to topsoil erosion, arable land shrinkage,
and massive food insecurity
Deforestation has many negative health and
environmental effects, including displacement of
disease- bearing insects, microclimate changes,
release of GHGs, land degradation, disruption of
animal habitats, and loss of biodiversity. Among
other human health implications, unprecedented
biodiversity loss (from pollution, over- exploitation,
and destruction of natural habitats) alters ecosystems’
ability to remove pollutants from air and
water, increases risk of zoonotic disease spread, and
diminishes pollination and pest control, as well as
reducing sources of new medicines
In addition to contributing to up to half
of malaria cases, deforestation has also led to new
human- microbial interactions and the introduction
(or reemergence) of Nipah virus and other diseases.
Deforestation also jeopardizes health by worsening
Explain whose responsibility it is to address health problems linked to the environment at
international, national and local levels
Of the 4 approaches to environmental degradation and climate change, which one is addressed
by the Chipko movement in preventing deforestation? Give 2 points justifying your answer.
Chipko (meaning “to cling/ embrace” in Hindi)
began spontaneously in 1973 when Indian villagers,
mainly women, began to hug trees that were destined
to be cut down. In 1980, as a result of these actions,
the government of Uttar Pradesh imposed a 15- year
ban on logging in the Himalayan region. Chipko
movements, which are based on Gandhi’s principle
of satyagraha (nonviolent resistance), are generally
autonomous and have since extended to the protection
of water and other resources
Four approaches explained
Market Liberals: Proponents of “free markets” hold
that “economic growth and high per capita incomes
are essential for human welfare and the maintenance
of sustainable development” (Clapp and Dauvergne
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2011, p. 4) in the context of globalization. Advocates
of market liberalism, such as the WTO and the World
Business Council for Sustainable Development, reject
the catastrophic urgency of environmental devastation
and the call for precautionary policies, arguing
that voluntary corporate efforts together with market
pressures and new technologies will ultimately
improve environmental management.
Institutionalists: Sharing market liberal assumptions
regarding economic growth, trade, foreign
investment, globalization, and technology, institutionalists
focus on cooperation at global, state, and
local levels. Institutionalists believe that improved
global governance and consensus building offer
effective means of addressing environmental problems.
They see failures to reach or enforce international
agreements as a principal reason for global
environmental degradation. Institutionalists support
the diffusion of knowledge and resources from
HICs to LMICs, as well as cooperative action, to
forestall further environmental deterioration. Bioenvironmentalists: Emphasizing that humans
due to population growth and patterns of consumption
are depleting and abusing the planet’s finite and fragile
resources, bioenvironmentalists hold that the earth’s
capacity to sustain current levels of consumption has
already been surpassed (see Box 10- 8 for a way of measuring
this). They view globalization as a negative force
that fuels consumption and promotes environmentally
destructive production processes in LMICs. Instead,
they advocate limits on economic growth, curbs on
immigration to HICs, individual approaches to lowering
consumption, and family planning as key solutions to
environmental degradation.
Social Greens: Social greens draw on radical social
and economic theories that consider environmental
problems to be inseparable from the capitalist system.
Like bioenvironmentalists, social greens believe that
there are physical limits to economic growth and that
overconsumption is at least partially to blame. But for
social greens the problem is systemic: the production
and consumption logic that undergirds the capitalistworld order, deeply rooted in historical processes and
reproduction of inequality, is the driver of environmental
crises. Rejecting bioenvironmentalist positions
that population growth is at fault, social greens
call for a complete overhaul of the global economic
system, advocating the abandonment of industrial
and capitalist life for self- reliant, equitable, small- scale
economic communities.
. Name 2 major frameworks centred on global governance to tackling climate change briefly
explain how they address this issue.
The 1997 Kyoto Protocol was the first core global
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agreement to address climate change. The initial
commitment period required 36 HICs to reduce
emissions of six GHGs by an average of 5% below
1990 levels between 2008 and 2012. The second
period began in 2012 and requires countries to
reduce GHG emissions by 18% below 1990 levels by
2020, but this round never entered into force because
not enough countries ratified itmany environmental
activists believe Kyoto offered a promising step
in the right direction, particularly influencing
some EU countries (e.g., Germany and the United
Kingdom) to adopt more ambitious targets to
enable the EU to meet its commitments via burdensharing.
Ultimately, however, the Kyoto Protocol
was flawed in that its very design impeded the possibility
of effectively mitigating global climate change
The highly anticipated COP21 meeting produced
an agreement among 196 countries to limit
global average temperature increases to below
2°C (aiming, without commitment, for a more
ambitious 1.5°C limit). By late 2016, China and
the United States together producing 40% of
global carbon emissions along with dozens of
other countries, had ratified the Paris agreement
(enabling it to come into force). The agreement
rests on intended nationally determined contributions
(INDCs), emissions reduction targets for
2020 (renewed every 5 years thereafter) set entirely
by individual nations on a voluntary basis with
no penalties for noncompliance
Other critics pointed out that, as with Kyoto, the
agreement relies on ineffective market approaches
to reducing emissions including cap and trade
arrangements whereby companies and governments
that have achieved their emissions reduction
targets can auction off their unused quota to larger
polluters and carbon offsetting, which provides
credit for GHG reductions
. Define the precautionary principle and give an example of how it’s been used as it relates to
environmental degradation and climate change
Another approach is the precautionary principle, which advocates preventive action to avoid
or diminish scientifically plausible, but uncertain, health or environmental harms associated with
human activities. The concept originated in Germany (from the idea of foresight) in the 1970s
and became a tenet of the 1992 Rio Declaration (UNESCO 2005). Unlike EIA, the precautionary
principle’s burden of proof rests with the proponents of a new technology or activity. In 2014,
several regional authorities within North America imposed moratoriums on fracking due to
inadequate knowledge about long- term risks to health, water, and the environment; various
European and North American governments have also invoked the precautionary principle to
justify banning the plasticizer BPA from food- contact plastics because exposure potentially leads
to cancer, neurological, and other health risks (
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