To further distance himself from the charge of ecofascism, Callicott introduced explicit principles which prioritize obligations to human communities over those to natural ones.
As he put it:. It remains to be seen if this position escapes the charges of misanthropy and totalitarianism laid against earlier holistic and relational theories of value. This, he proposes, is a reason for thinking that individual natural entities should not be treated as mere instruments, and thus a reason for assigning them intrinsic value. Furthermore, he argues that the same moral point applies to the case of natural ecosystems, to the extent that they lack intrinsic function. Carrying the project of attributing intrinsic value to nature to its ultimate form, Robert Elliot argues that naturalness itself is a property in virtue of possessing which all natural things, events, and states of affairs, attain intrinsic value.
Furthermore, Elliot argues that even a consequentialist, who in principle allows the possibility of trading off intrinsic value from naturalness for intrinsic value from other sources, could no longer justify such kind of trade-off in reality. This is because the reduction of intrinsic value due to the depletion of naturalness on earth, according to him, has reached such a level that any further reduction of it could not be compensated by any amount of intrinsic value generated in other ways, no matter how great it is.
Katz, on the other hand, argues that a restored nature is really just an artifact designed and created for the satisfaction of human ends, and that the value of restored environments is merely instrumental. However, some critics have pointed out that advocates of moral dualism between the natural and the artifactual run the risk of diminishing the value of human life and culture, and fail to recognize that the natural environments interfered with by humans may still have morally relevant qualities other than pure naturalness see Lo Yet, as Bernard Williams points out Williams , we may, paradoxically, need to use our technological powers to retain a sense of something not being in our power.
An important message underlying the debate, perhaps, is that even if ecological restoration is achievable, it might have been better to have left nature intact in the first place. Given the significance of the concept of naturalness in these debates, it is perhaps surprising that there has been relatively little analysis of that concept itself in environmental thought. In his pioneering work on the ethics of the environment, Holmes Rolston has worked with a number of different conceptions of the natural see Brennan and Lo , pp. Indeed, the richness of the language of virtues, and the emphasis on moral character, is sometimes cited as a reason for exploring a virtues-based approach to the complex and always-changing questions of sustainability and environmental care Hill , Wensveen , Sandler One question central to virtue ethics is what the moral reasons are for acting one way or another.
For instance, from the perspective of virtue ethics, kindness and loyalty would be moral reasons for helping a friend in hardship. From the perspective of virtue ethics, the motivation and justification of actions are both inseparable from the character traits of the acting agent. Furthermore, unlike deontology or consequentialism the moral focus of which is other people or states of the world, one central issue for virtue ethics is how to live a flourishing human life, this being a central concern of the moral agent himself or herself.
The connection between morality and psychology is another core subject of investigation for virtue ethics. It is sometimes suggested that human virtues, which constitute an important aspect of a flourishing human life, must be compatible with human needs and desires, and perhaps also sensitive to individual affection and temperaments. As its central focus is human flourishing as such, virtue ethics may seem unavoidably anthropocentric and unable to support a genuine moral concern for the non-human environment.
Despite the variety of positions in environmental ethics developed over the last thirty years, they have focused mainly on issues concerned with wilderness and the reasons for its preservation see Callicott and Nelson for a collection of essays on the ideas and moral significance of wilderness. The importance of wilderness experience to the human psyche has been emphasized by many environmental philosophers. Likewise, the critical theorists believe that aesthetic appreciation of nature has the power to re-enchant human life.
An argument by Bryan Norton draws attention to an analogy with music. Someone exposed for the first time to a new musical genre may undergo a transformation in musical preferences, tastes and values as a result of the experience Norton Such a transformation can affect their other preferences and desires too, in both direct and indirect ways see Sarkar , ch.
By contrast to the focus on wild places, relatively little attention has been paid to the built environment, although this is the one in which most people spend most of their time. In post-war Britain, for example, cheaply constructed new housing developments were often poor replacements for traditional communities. They have been associated with lower amounts of social interaction and increased crime compared with the earlier situation. The destruction of highly functional high-density traditional housing, indeed, might be compared with the destruction of highly diverse ecosystems and biotic communities.
Some philosophical theories about natural environments and objects have potential to be extended to cover built environments and non-natural objects of several sorts see King , Light , Palmer , while Fox aims to include both built and natural environments in the scope of a single ethical theory.
Certainly there are many parallels between natural and artificial domains: for example, many of the conceptual problems involved in discussing the restoration of natural objects also appear in the parallel context of restoring human-made objects. Thus, a new range of moral and political problems open up, including the environmental cost of tourist access to wilderness areas, and ways in which limited access could be arranged to areas of natural beauty and diversity, while maintaining the individual freedoms central to liberal democracies. Lovers of wilderness sometimes consider the high human populations in some developing countries as a key problem underlying the environmental crisis.
But such a view has been criticized for seeming to reveal a degree of misanthropy, directed at those human beings least able to protect and defend themselves see Attfield , Brennan a. Can such an apparently elitist sort of wilderness ethics ever be democratised? These questions so far lack convincing answers. For those in the richer countries, for instance, engaging in outdoor recreations usually involves the motor car.
Car dependency, however, is at the heart of many environmental problems, a key factor in urban pollution, while at the same time central to the economic and military activities of many nations and corporations, for example securing and exploiting oil reserves. In an increasingly crowded industrialised world, the answers to such problems are pressing. Any adequate study of this intertwined set of problems must involve interdisciplinary collaboration among philosophers and theorists in the social as well as the natural sciences. Connections between environmental destruction, unequal resource consumption, poverty and the global economic order have been discussed by political scientists, development theorists, geographers and economists as well as by philosophers.
Links between economics and environmental ethics are particularly well established. Work by Mark Sagoff , for instance, has played a major part in bringing the two fields together. We pay extra for travel insurance to cover the cost of cancellation, illness, or lost baggage. Such actions are economically rational.
They provide us with some compensation in case of loss. No-one, however, would regard insurance payments as replacing lost limbs, a loved one or even the joys of a cancelled vacation. So it is for nature, according to Sagoff. We can put dollar values on a stand of timber, a reef, a beach, a national park. We can measure the travel costs, the money spent by visitors, the real estate values, the park fees and all the rest. If Sagoff is right, cost-benefit analysis of the kind mentioned in section 5 above cannot be a basis for an ethic of sustainability any more than for an ethic of biodiversity.
The potentially misleading appeal to economic reason used to justify the expansion of the corporate sector has also come under critical scrutiny by globalisation theorists see Korten These critiques do not aim to eliminate economics from environmental thinking; rather, they resist any reductive, and strongly anthropocentric, tendency to believe that all social and environmental problems are fundamentally or essentially economic. Other interdisciplinary approaches link environmental ethics with biology, policy studies, public administration, political theory, cultural history, post-colonial theory, literature, geography, and human ecology for some examples, see Norton, Hutchins, Stevens, Maple , Shrader-Frechette , Gruen and Jamieson eds.
The future development of environmental ethics depend on these, and other interdisciplinary synergies, as much as on its anchorage within philosophy. This report noted the increasing tide of evidence that planetary systems vital to supporting life on earth were under strain. The key question it raised is whether it is equitable to sacrifice options for future well-being in favour of supporting current lifestyles, especially the comfortable, and sometimes lavish, forms of life enjoyed in the rich countries.
In keeping with the non-anthropocentric focus of much environmental philosophy, a care for sustainability and biodiversity can embrace a care for opportunities available to non-human living things. In face of increasing evidence that planetary systems vital to life-support were under strain, the concept of sustainable development is constructed in the report to encourage certain globally coordinated directions and types of economic and social development.
Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It contains within it two key concepts:. Thus the goals of economic and social development must be defined in terms of sustainability in all countries—developed or developing, market-oriented or centrally planned.
Interpretations will vary, but must share certain general features and must flow from a consensus on the basic concept of sustainable development and on a broad strategic framework for achieving it. WCED , Ch. Provided the flow of such goods and services does not reduce the capacity of the capital itself to maintain its productivity, the use of the systems in question is regarded as sustainable.
There are clear philosophical, political and economic precursors to the Brundtland concept of sustainability.
In This Article
Mill also recognized a debt to the gloomy prognostications of Thomas Malthus, who had conjectured that population tends to increase geometrically while food resources at best increase only arithmetically, so that demand for food will inevitably outstrip the supply see Milgate and Stimson , Ch. Reflection on Malthus led Mill to argue for restraining human population growth:. Such warnings resonate with more recent pessimism about increasing human population and its impact on the poorest people, as well as on loss of biodiversity, fresh water scarcity, overconsumption and climate change.
This is clear not only among those who recognize limits to economic growth Meadows et al. The Brundtland report puts less emphasis on limits than do Mill, Malthus and these more recent writers. It depicts sustainability as a challenge and opportunity for the world to become more socially, politically and environmentally fair. As intended by the report the idea of sustainable development has become strongly integrated into the notion of environmental conservation.
urban area | National Geographic Society
The report has also set the scene for a range of subsequent international conferences, declarations, and protocols many of them maintaining the emphasis on the prospects for the future of humanity, rather than considering sustainability in any wider sense. Some early commentators on the notion of sustainable development have been critical of the way the notion mixes together moral ideas of justice and fairness with technical ideas in economics.
The objection is that sustainability as, in part, an economic and scientific notion, should not be fused with evaluative ideals Beckerman This objection has not generally been widely taken up. Some non-anthropocentric environmental thinkers have found the language of economics unsatisfactory in its implications since it already appears to assume a largely instrumental view of nature. The objection is that such language promotes the tendency to think of natural things as mere resources for humans or as raw materials with which human labour could be mixed, not only to produce consumable goods, but also to generate human ownership Plumwood , Sagoff If natural objects and systems have intrinsic value independent of their possible use for humans, as many environmental philosophers have argued, then a policy approach to sustainability needs to consider the environment and natural things not only in instrumental and but also in intrinsic terms to do justice to the moral standing that many people believe such items possess.
The preservation concern for nature and non-human species is addressed to some extent by making a distinction between weaker and stronger conceptions of sustainability Beckerman The distinction emerged from considering the question: what exactly does sustainable development seek to sustain? Is the flow of goods and services from world markets that is to be maintained, or is it the current—or some future—level of consumption? In answering such questions, proponents of weak sustainability argue that it is acceptable to replace natural capital with human-made capital provided that the latter has equivalent functions.
If, for example, plastic trees could produce oxygen, absorb carbon and support animal and insect communities, then they could replace the real thing, and a world with functionally equivalent artificial trees would seem just as good as one with real or natural trees in it. For weak sustainability theorists, the aim of future development should be to maintain a consistently productive stock of capital on which to draw, while not insisting that some portion of that capital be natural. Strong sustainability theorists, by contrast, generally resist the substitution of human for natural capital, insisting that a critical stock of natural things and processes be preserved.
By so doing, they argue, we maintain stocks of rivers, forests and biodiverse systems, hence providing maximum options—options in terms of experience, appreciation, values, and ways of life—for the future human inhabitants of the planet Norton Implicit in the statement is not only a strong conception of sustainability but also a non-anthropocentric conception of the notion.
Over time, strong sustainability has come to be focused not only on the needs of human and other living things but also on their rights Redclift , As globalization leads to greater integration of world economies, the world after the Brundtland report has seen greater fragmentation among viewpoints, where critics of globalization have generally used the concept of sustainability in a plurality of different ways Sneddon, Howarth and Norgaard For better or for worse, such ambiguity can on occasion allow different parties in negotiations to claim a measure of agreement.
The preservation of opportunities to live well, or at least to have a minimally acceptable level of well being, is at the heart of population ethics and many contemporary conceptions of sustainability. Many people believe such opportunities for the existing younger generations, and also for the yet to arrive future generations, to be under threat from continuing environmental destruction, including loss of fresh water resources, continued clearing of wild areas and a changing climate.
Of these, climate change has come to prominence as an area of intense policy and political debate, to which applied philosophers and ethicists have much to contribute. An early exploration of the topic by John Broome shows how the economics of climate change could not be divorced from considerations of intergenerational justice and ethics Broome , and this has set the scene for subsequent discussions and analyses.
This is due to the multi-faceted nature of a problem that involves vast numbers of agents and players. At a global level, there is first of all the practical problem of motivating shared responsibilities see the entry on moral motivation in part due to the dispersed nature of greenhouse gas emissions which makes the effects of increasing levels of atmospheric carbon and methane not always felt most strongly in the regions where they originate.
Add to this the fact that there is an un-coordinated and also dispersed network of agents—both individual and corporate—responsible for greenhouse gas emissions, and that there are no effective institutions that can control and limit them. But this tangle of issues constitutes, Gardiner argues, only one strand in the skein of quandaries that confronts us. There is also the fact that by and large only future generations will carry the brunt of the impacts of climate change, explaining why current generations have no strong incentive to act.
Finally, it is evident that our current mainstream political, economic, and ethical models are not up to the task of reaching global consensus, and in many cases not even national consensus, on how best to design and implement fair climate policies. These considerations lead Gardiner to take a pessimistic view of the prospects for progress on climate issues.
His view includes pessimism about technical solutions, such as geoengineering as the antidote to climate problems, echoing the concerns of others that further domination of and large scale interventions in nature may turn out to be a greater evil than enduring a climate catastrophe Gardiner , ch 11, Jamieson Because of the grave risk of serious harms to future generations, our failure to take timely mitigating actions on climate isseus can be seen as a serious moral failing, especially in the light of our current knowledge and understanding of the problem.
In the face of such pessimism about the prospects for securing any action to combat climate change other writers have cautioned against giving in to defeatism and making self-fulfilling prophecies. These latter behaviours are always a temptation when we confront worrying truths and insufficient answers. Whatever the future holds, many thinkers now believe that solving the problems of climate change is an essential ingredient in any credible form of sustainable development and that the alternative to decisive action may result in the diminution not only of nature and natural systems, but also of human dignity itself see Nanda , especially chapters by Heyd, Balafrej, Gutrich and Brennan and Lo.
Also, thanks to Dale Jamieson for comments on the version revised and updated in January Brennan latrobe. Introduction: The Challenge of Environmental Ethics 2. The Early Development of Environmental Ethics 3. Environmental Ethics and Politics 3. Wilderness, the Built Environment, Poverty and Politics 6. Introduction: The Challenge of Environmental Ethics Suppose putting out natural fires, culling feral animals or destroying some individual members of overpopulated indigenous species is necessary for the protection of the integrity of a certain ecosystem.
The Early Development of Environmental Ethics Although nature was the focus of much nineteenth and twentieth century philosophy, contemporary environmental ethics only emerged as an academic discipline in the s. In the commentary to the study, the researchers wrote: We affirm finally that any deliberate attempt to reach a rational and enduring state of equilibrium by planned measures, rather than by chance or catastrophe, must ultimately be founded on a basic change of values and goals at individual, national and world levels.
Meadows et al. Leopold vii—ix A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability, and beauty of the biotic community. Leopold —5 However, Leopold himself provided no systematic ethical theory or framework to support these ethical ideas concerning the environment. Traditional Ethical Theories and Contemporary Environment Ethics Although environmental ethicists often try to distance themselves from the anthropocentrism embedded in traditional ethical views Passmore , Norton are exceptions , they also quite often draw their theoretical resources from traditional ethical systems and theories.
As he put it The second second-order principle is that stronger interests for lack of a better word generate duties that take precedence over duties generated by weaker interests. Supplementary Document: Biodiversity Preservation 5. Wilderness, the Built Environment, Poverty and Politics Despite the variety of positions in environmental ethics developed over the last thirty years, they have focused mainly on issues concerned with wilderness and the reasons for its preservation see Callicott and Nelson for a collection of essays on the ideas and moral significance of wilderness.
Reflection on Malthus led Mill to argue for restraining human population growth: Even in a progressive state of capital, in old countries, a conscientious or prudential restraint on population is indispensable, to prevent the increase of numbers from outstripping the increase of capital, and the condition of the classes who are at the bottom of society from being deteriorated Mill , IV. Bibliography Abram, D. Agapow, P.
Agar, N. Aquinas, T. Summa Contra Gentiles , trans. Politics , trans. Barker, Oxford: Oxford University Press, Aiken, W. Anker, P. In Witoszek and Brennan , pp. Attfield, R. Jamieson ed. Barry, J. Rethinking Green Politics , London: Sage. Beckerman, W. Weak or Strong? Bentham, J. Benton, Ted, Bernstein, Jay, Birch, T. Bookchin, M. Bradley, B. Brady, E. Thinking About Nature , London Routledge. Brennan, A. Lickiss and J. Malpas eds , Perspectives on Human Dignity , Springer, pp.
Understanding Environmental Philosophy , London: Acumen. Boyd, Heather, Callicott, J. Callicott and M.
Baird, and Ames, Roger T. Carson, R. Silent Spring , London: Hamish Hamilton. Cheney, J. Clark, J. Zimmerman et al. Clark, S. Cohen, M. Collins, S. Crisp, R. Dasgupta, P. Le Feminisme ou la Mort , Paris: P. Horay de Shalit, A. Why Does Posterity Matter? Brown and K. Peacock eds. Devall, B. Diesendorf, M. Dobson, A. Dryzek, J. Dunlap, R. Abstract View in KAR View Full Text Major advances have been made in trying to go beyond the conventional cost-benefit analysis appraisal of major transport projects that focus almost entirely on user benefits.
Whilst newer methods to estimate the potential for agglomeration impacts in an imperfectly competitive world have become more mainstream there is still a desire to be able to capture more robustly the even more transformational impacts that are often claimed to result from major projects. This paper reviews some of these approaches and discusses how they have been used in some projects in the United Kingdom. It concludes that there is still scope for further improvement but that the desire of policy makers for precise estimates may have to be modified.
Can high-speed rail have a transformative effect on the economy?. Transport Policy [Online] 62 By bringing cities and regions closer together it is argued that economies can benefit from lower generalised costs of transport leading to enhanced growth and productivity. A counter argument is that such effects are largely redistributive with some regions benefiting and others suffering depending on their ability to take advantage of new opportunities.
However, some argue further than this and claim that such step changes in transport provision can lead to major changes in economic structure that can transform regions' absolute as well as relative position and thus redress the existence of regional disparities. In this paper, we address the question as to whether there is a clear and robust economic theory of the transformational impact of high-speed rail and if there is any consistent evidence to support it?
This is followed by a discussion of the various claims and counter-claims for the impact of the proposed HS2 that will link London with Birmingham, Leeds and Manchester. On the basis of this some of the implications for the appraisal of such projects are considered. The main conclusion from the paper is that transport infrastructure by itself is not likely to be transformative, but coupled with other policy interventions it can contribute to such an effect.
Can transport infrastructure change regions' economic fortunes: some evidence from Europe and China. Regional Studies [Online] 51 Some evidence from Europe and China. Regional Studies. Claims and counterclaims about the likely impact of new transport infrastructure on a region's economic performance have existed for centuries going back to the early days of canals and railways.
High-speed rail HSR as a new type of infrastructure has just over 50 years of existence. The persistent debate is questioning the power of HSR in reducing economic disparities between cities and effecting economic transformation. The paper goes beyond macro-modelling, looking to more disaggregated approaches of the structural changes.
Two regions, one in Europe and one in China, are compared to gain insights for future research and practice. High-speed rail networks, economic integration and regional specialisation in China and Europe.
Travel Behaviour and Society [Online] 2 Policy makers, faced with the claim that the cost of high-speed rail HSR makes it an expensive way of achieving the supposed benefits, seek to identify wider economic impacts through productivity gains as a justification. This paper explores the development of HSR as an instrument for promoting economic integration both through enhancing competitiveness and achieving greater economic cohesion in China and the European Union. The paper examines changes in accessibility and provides evidence on changes in specialisation for both main cities and their hinterlands.
The evidence confirms that impacts differ widely and that the process of convergence and divergence differs at different stages of economic development. High-speed rail and regional development: the case of intermediate stations. Journal of Transport Geography [Online] 42 Abstract View in KAR View Full Text High-speed rail has developed both nationally and internationally in Europe as a successful alternative to both air and road over distances of — km.
Inter-city traffic, especially between the major metropolitan areas in North-west Europe has benefitted greatly from the investment in this network. This paper explores two issues: the impact on the intermediate areas between these major metropolitan areas and the creation of potential cross-border inter-regional services.
The evidence shows how both levels of service and potential economic impacts have been much less pronounced in these intermediate areas. Such areas have been affected both by a failure to see greatly improved direct access to major cities other than within their own countries and a lack of new cross-border inter-regional services.
The paper argues that the creation of the high-speed rail TEN-T has not met the primary objectives of reducing regional disparities in accessibility or reducing the effect of national borders on regional integration. To achieve this requires not just infrastructure provision but an appropriate regulatory framework for service provision and accompanying measures at the local level.
High-Speed Rail opportunities around metropolitan regions: Madrid and London. Journal of Infrastructure Systems [Online] 18 Recently, intermediate HSR stations have also been created in suburban areas or small cities within the limits of metropolitan areas up to km , opening up new metropolitan transportation opportunities, notably the strengthening of inward and outward commuting and through traffic across the metropolis.
The argument advanced in this paper is under what conditions HSR could facilitate the development of small HSR suburban cities as special subcenters of the metropolitan area with particularly good connections to the metropolitan center and to other distant metropolises. Infrastructure layout, station typologies, and rail services are compared together with each city's territorial contexts, activities, and connections with other transport modes. This case-study approach, taking account of specific circumstances and contexts, facilitates the understanding of the HSR impact on metropolitan development, offering new transport alternatives.
Research in Transportation Economics [Online] 30 We first briefly discuss Public-Private Partnerships in transport: what are the defining characteristics and what are the main types that exist in the different modes of transport? Next we consider the economics of Public-Private Partnerships, in particular from the viewpoint of incentives. Subsequently we identify and examine the issues that arise when Social Marginal Cost Pricing is to be incorporated in PPPs as a regulation with regard to pricing in the transport sector. Lastly, we investigate the possibilities of resolving these issues. Regulation, Transport and Regional Performance.
Studies in Regional Science [Online] 39 Abstract View in KAR ransport provision has a clear relationship to regional economic performance. Since transport is typically provided in a regulated market it is important to understand the ways in which the regulatory regimes can affect the efficient provision of transport. Evidence of state control can be seen in the many goods which were stamped or carried markers indicating their origin or manufacturer and in some cases guaranteeing their weight, purity or genuineness. Pottery, amphorae, bricks, glass, metal ingots important for coinage , tiles, marble and wooden barrels were usually stamped and general goods for transportation carried metal tags or lead seals.
These measures helped to control trade, provide product guarantees and prevent fraud. Inscriptions on olive oil amphorae were particularly detailed as they indicated the weight of the vessel empty and of the oil added, the place of production, the name of the merchant transporting them and the names and signatures of the officials who carried out these controls. Trade was also carried out completely independent from the state, though, and was favoured by the development of banking. Although banking and money-lending generally remained a local affair there are records of merchants taking out a loan in one port and paying it off in another once the goods were delivered and sold on.
There is also abundant evidence of a free-trade economy beyond the reaches of the empire and independent of the larger cities and army camps. Whatever the exact economic mechanisms and proportion of state to private enterprise, the scale of trade in the Roman world is hugely impressive and no other pre-industrial society came even close. Such mundane functional items as amphorae or oil lamps were produced in their millions and it has been estimated that in Rome alone the quantity of oil traded was 23,, kilograms per year whilst the city's annual wine consumption was well over 1,, hectolitres, probably nearer 2 million.
These kinds of figures would not be seen again until industrialisation swept the developed world long after Roman traders had closed their accounting books and been forgotten by history. Editorial Review This Article has been reviewed for accuracy, reliability and adherence to academic standards prior to publication.
We're a small non-profit organisation run by a handful of volunteers. Become a Member. Cartwright, M. Trade in the Roman World. Ancient History Encyclopedia. Cartwright, Mark. Last modified April 12, Ancient History Encyclopedia, 12 Apr This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon this content non-commercially, as long as they credit the author and license their new creations under the identical terms.
Please note that content linked from this page may have different licensing terms. Factors Driving Trade Generally speaking, as with earlier and contemporary civilizations, the Romans gradually developed a more sophisticated economy following the creation of an agricultural surplus, population movement and urban growth, territorial expansion, technology innovation, taxation, the spread of coinage , and not insignificantly, the need to feed the great city of Rome itself and supply its huge army wherever it might be on campaign.
Remove Ads Advertisement. About the Author Mark Cartwright. Mark is a history writer based in Italy. His special interests include pottery, architecture, world mythology and discovering the ideas that all civilizations share in common. Related Content Filters: All. Trade has always been a vital aspect of any civilization whether Trade and commerce in the medieval world developed to such an extent