Environmental Ethics

Environmental Ethics is part of the study of environmental philosophy, which extends the ethics to environmental geography environmental sociology, environmental law, ecological economics, Eco theology, and ecology.  Alan Marshall has come up with three general approaches to environmental ethics over the past forty years, libertarian extension, ecologic extension, and conservation ethics.

Libertarian extension is a civil liberty approach to environmentalism that means that all members of a community humans and non-humans can exist.  Andrew Brennan a eco humanist stated that all things in the environment have ethical worth to exist together.  With the help of Arne Naess, they argued that deep ecology gives inherent worth and natural value to the environment.  This argument fell under the libertarian extension and ecologic extension.

Ecologic extension is not about human rights but recognition of all biological creatures and their diversities.  Libertarian extension is the political reflection of the world but ecologic extension is more of a scientific reflection.  This looks at ecosystems or the global environment as a whole.  Included in this is James Lovelock’s Gaia Hypothesis that tells us that our geo physiological structure that will change over time to help organic and inorganic matter to evolve.

Conservation ethics shows the value of use for biological world.  Its main focus is on how much it is worth to humans, meaning can we use it.  The conversation of the environment is important to the extrinsic value, since humans are usually at the hands of their extrinsic value. Conservation ethics is a means to an end because of humanity.  This ethic help governments come to an agreement at Kyoto summit in 97 and in Rio three agreements were reached in 1992.

This is just a brief look at environmental ethics; there is still humanist theories, applied theology, and anthropocentrism that are interesting subjects to cover. Environmental ethics are there to show how we can help our environment and how humans affect it.  These ethics give moral and ethical values to human and non-human animals.  Even though we are the superior race, that doesn’t mean that animals and plants aren’t just as important.  The have a right to exist along side us.  Human, animals, and plants all make up our society.  Since all life forms are part of the food chain then we are all connected to each other.  We are the environment that we are a part of and conservation is the only thing that will allows us all to coexist together.

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