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Debates Forum

  1. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    30 Jul '13 17:41
    Here is the introduction to the article on Deep Ecology on Wikipedia:

    Deep ecology is a contemporary ecological and environmental philosophy characterized by its advocacy of the inherent worth of living beings regardless of their instrumental utility to human needs, and advocacy for a radical restructuring of modern human societies in accordance with such ideas. Deep ecology argues that the natural world is a subtle balance of complex inter-relationships in which the existence of organisms is dependent on the existence of others within ecosystems. Human interference with or destruction of the natural world poses a threat therefore not only to humans but to all organisms constituting the natural order.

    Deep ecology's core principle is the belief that the living environment as a whole should be respected and regarded as having certain legal rights to live and flourish. It describes itself as "deep" because it regards itself as looking more deeply into the actual reality of humanity's relationship with the natural world arriving at philosophically more profound conclusions than that of the prevailing view of ecology as a branch of biology. The movement does not subscribe to anthropocentric environmentalism (which is concerned with conservation of the environment only for exploitation by and for human purposes) since Deep ecology is grounded in a quite different set of philosophical assumptions. Deep ecology takes a more holistic view of the world human beings live in and seeks to apply to life the understanding that the separate parts of the ecosystem (including humans) function as a whole. This philosophy provides a foundation for the environmental, ecology and green movements and has fostered a new system of environmental ethics advocating wilderness preservation, human population control and simple living.


    Since I don't know how much exposure people here have to concepts like this, I feel it is my duty to bring it to their attention. So does anyone have any thoughts on the quoted material above?
  2. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    31 Jul '13 17:53 / 1 edit
    Alright, continuing on, here are the principles of deep ecology (with smiley faces):

    Proponents of deep ecology believe that the world does not exist as a resource to be freely exploited by humans. The ethics of deep ecology hold that a whole system is superior to any of its parts. Proponents of deep ecology offer an eight-tier platform to elucidate their claims:

    The well-being and flourishing of human and nonhuman life on Earth have value in themselves (synonyms: intrinsic value, inherent value). These values are independent of the usefulness of the nonhuman world for human purposes.

    Richness and diversity of life forms contribute to the realization of these values and are also values in themselves.

    Humans have no right to reduce this richness and diversity except to satisfy vital human needs.

    The flourishing of human life and cultures is compatible with a substantial decrease of the human population. The flourishing of nonhuman life requires such a decrease.

    Present human interference with the nonhuman world is excessive, and the situation is rapidly worsening.

    Policies must therefore be changed. These policies affect basic economic, technological, and ideological structures. The resulting state of affairs will be deeply different from the present.

    The ideological change is mainly that of appreciating life quality (dwelling in situations of inherent value) rather than adhering to an increasingly higher standard of living. There will be a profound awareness of the difference between big and great.

    Those who subscribe to the foregoing points have an obligation directly or indirectly to try to implement the necessary changes.

    These principles can be refined down into three simple propositions:

    Wilderness preservation;
    Human population control;
    Simple living (or treading lightly on the planet).


    Those last three items are important. They are what is going to save us from ourselves if it can be done.
  3. Subscriber Sleepyguy
    Reepy Rastardly Guy
    31 Jul '13 18:10
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Alright, continuing on, here are the principles of deep ecology (with smiley faces):

    [quote]Proponents of deep ecology believe that the world does not exist as a resource to be freely exploited by humans. The ethics of deep ecology hold that a whole system is superior to any of its parts. Proponents of deep ecology offer an eight-tier platform to elucida ...[text shortened]... t three items are important. They are what is going to save us from ourselves if it can be done.
    So, Big Mac's are out then?
  4. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    31 Jul '13 19:00
    Originally posted by Sleepyguy
    So, Big Mac's are out then?
    Not necessarily.
  5. Subscriber Sleepyguy
    Reepy Rastardly Guy
    31 Jul '13 19:19
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Not necessarily.
    So Big Mac's are a vital human need?
  6. Donation rwingett
    Ming the Merciless
    31 Jul '13 19:53
    Originally posted by Sleepyguy
    So Big Mac's are a vital human need?
    Food is. You could certainly argue that meat is not a vital need, but you are certain to encounter different interpretations as to what constitutes "vital." My personal opinion is that while mankind should eat far less meat (especially in the west), vegetarianism is not absolutely necessary. Plus the reference to "richness and diversity" in the third point (which seems to be what you're referring to) refers more to species and their distribution than it does to individual animals.
  7. 02 Aug '13 18:36
    Originally posted by rwingett
    Alright, continuing on, here are the principles of deep ecology (with smiley faces):

    [quote]Proponents of deep ecology believe that the world does not exist as a resource to be freely exploited by humans. The ethics of deep ecology hold that a whole system is superior to any of its parts. Proponents of deep ecology offer an eight-tier platform to elucida ...[text shortened]... t three items are important. They are what is going to save us from ourselves if it can be done.
    "Wilderness preservation;
    Human population control;
    Simple living (or treading lightly on the planet)"

    I am commenting on these as they seem to be the basis for the rest.

    Wilderness preservation: Not sure who does the preservation, and what preservation means. I hunt State land, in the Upper and Thumb. In both cases, nobody cares for the land, so it is not well preserved, not compared to privately owned land.

    Human population control: Most of the mature cultures have already fallen into replacement breeding patterns. Only the most primitive still breed without concerns.

    Simple living: This seems achievable, without a lot of coercion, in fact some modern technologies make a lighter footprint possible, especially compared to the primitive areas and habits.