The Environmental Crisis

By Miguel A. Santos; Randall M. Miller | Go to book overview

compromise that would allow polluting countries to purchase or trade emission credits from countries whose emissions are below the acceptable levels. On the other hand, many industrialized countries, particularly the United States, are insisting that the treaty should impose requirements on newly industrialized nations and require developing countries to participate in a global plan to reduce climate-altering gases. During the next few years, people worldwide will be subjected to lobbying by powerful coalitions (environmentalists versus fossil-fuel providers and industries) that support and oppose the proposed treaty.

The preceding notwithstanding, several positive developments have resulted from these international conferences. The first is that they brought attention to the endangered global commons. Secondly, the conferences brought together international decision makers. Finally, the conferences galvanized the world's emerging environmental movement.

The importance of the world's environmental movement should not be overlooked. Most environmental agreements are not yet subject to international adjudication, and other mechanisms may be used to enforce them. Some of these agreements have been enforced by means of trade measures, pressures from nongovernmental organizations, and debt-for-nature swaps. International commitment to protecting the global commons, an effort that has attracted the attention of both public and private decision makers, has demonstrated the value of widespread cooperation in the affairs of government.


NOTES
1.
Council on Environmental Quality, Environmental Quality: The Sixteenth Annual Report ( Washington, DC: Superintendent of Documents, 1985), 218.
2.
Rachel Carson, Silent Spring ( Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1962), 244.
3.
Robert C. Mitchell, "From Conservation to Environmental Movement," in Michael J. Lacey, ed., Government and Environmental Politics ( Baltimore: The Johns Hopkins University Press, 1991), 84.
4.
Barry Commoner, The Closing Circle ( New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1971), 38.
5.
Garrett Hardin, "Tragedy of the Commons," Science 162 ( 1968): 1244.
6.
Council on Environmental Quality, note 1, 224.
7.
Hilary F. French, "Learning from the Ozone Experience," in Lester B. Brown et al., eds., State of the World 1997 ( New York: W.W. Norton, 1997), 168.
8.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Assessment of Knowledge Relevant to the Interpretation of Article 2 of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change ( New York: United Nations, 1995).

-86-

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The Environmental Crisis
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Other Titles in the Greenwood Press Guides to Historic Events of the Twentieth Century ii
  • Title Page iii
  • ADVISORY BOARD v
  • Contents vii
  • Series Foreword ix
  • Preface xiii
  • Chronology of Events xvi
  • Chronology of Events xvii
  • The Environmental Crisis Explained 1
  • Notes 24
  • 2 - The Concern for Our Vanishing Wilderness 25
  • 3 - Pollution and the Emergence of Environmentalism 57
  • Notes 86
  • 4 - The Environmental Concern for Overpopulation 89
  • Notes 127
  • 5 - The Concept of a Self-Sustainable System 129
  • Notes 153
  • Biographies: The Personalities Behind the Environmental Crisis 155
  • Notes 165
  • Primary Documents of the Environmental Crisis 167
  • Glossary of Selected Terms 225
  • Annotated Bibliography 235
  • Index 245
  • About the Author 251
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