Environmental Science and International Politics: Acid Rain in Europe, 1979-1989, and Climate Change in Copenhagen 2009

By David E. Henderson; Susan K. Henderson | Go to book overview

Appendix 4. Study Questions for Reading Assignments

QUESTIONS ON ENVIRONMENTAL PHILOSOPHY
1. Compare Aristotle and Plato to the book of Genesis’ position on man’s relationship to the world.
2. What three alternatives does Marsh suggest for the relationship of people to Nature? How do these correspond to the 1951 UN statement on human progress?
3. Compare Naess’s concept of “Milieu” to Leopold’s idea of community.
4. What is the function of an ethic?
5. How does an ethic differ from an instinct? What about modern life requires the development of an environmental ethic?
6. What is the basic premise of an ethic?
7. What is the community on which Leopold’s Land Ethic is based?
8. Why cannot humans be “conquerors” of nature?
9. Why are economic arguments insufficient to develop an environmental ethic?
10. How does an ethic function to modify behavior?
11. Marsh and Leopold, almost a century apart, commented on the effects of human habitation on various areas. Which areas do they find have the most resilient biological communities and which have the least?
12. What is the number one factor that determines the damage of human impact on the ecosystem?
13. How does an ethic develop and operate? (This has direct relevance to the way in which the Swedish and Norwegian factions should approach the problem of control of acid rain.)
14. Compare the traditional worldview with that of Deep Ecology. What are the potential weaknesses of each?

QUESTIONS ON LOVELOCK’S GAIA HYPOTHESIS

Chapter 1. How did the search for life on Mars lead to the Gaia hypothesis?

Chapter 2. How does the relative constancy of the earth’s temperature support Lovelock’s argument for a global organism in control of the environment?

Chapter 3. How does the comparison of the atmospheres of Mars, Earth, and Venus support the Gaia hypothesis?

Chapter 4. What is the difference between positive and negative feedback loops in a cybernetic system? What examples of feedback systems does Lovelock use?

Chapter 5. Volcanos and some biological processes produce sulfate and sulfuric acid. Nitrates and nitric acid are also produced by oxidation of nitrogen. What does Gaia do to neutralize this acid and prevent the Earth from becoming too acidic for life? How does the anthropogenic production of sulfur and nitrogen oxides from fossil fuel combustion threaten the balance of pH of the biosphere?

Chapter 6. This chapter begins with a question: “Why is the sea salty?” Why is this the wrong question to ask?

Chapter 7. Lovelock conducted the early studies that showed chlorofluorocarbons to be spread around the globe and supported the efforts to reduce human emissions of these freon gases. What is his opinion of this effort and how does he rationalize this in terms of Gaia? What are the most serious human pollution challenges according to Lovelock? What is the role of information technology/communication in humanity’s role in Gaia? What is the difference between “spaceship earth” and Gaia?

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Environmental Science and International Politics: Acid Rain in Europe, 1979-1989, and Climate Change in Copenhagen 2009
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Note to Instructors viii
  • How to Play These Games 1
  • Contents 8
  • Figures and Tables 11
  • 1 - Historical Background 14
  • 2 - The Game 35
  • 3 - Roles and Factions 41
  • 4 - Core Texts and Supplemental Readings 44
  • Bibliography 106
  • Acknowledgments 109
  • Appendix 1- Introduction to Environmental Philosophy 110
  • Appendix 2- Introduction to Environmental Economics 116
  • Appendix 3- Using Numbers to Make Arguments 119
  • Appendix 4- Study Questions for Reading Assignments 121
  • Contents 124
  • Figures and Tables 127
  • 1 - Historical Background 129
  • 2 - The Game 153
  • 3 - Roles and Factions 159
  • 4 - Core Texts and Supplemental Readings 162
  • Acknowledgments 164
  • Appendix 1- Green House Gases 165
  • Appendix 2- Chemicals in Fossil Fuels 168
  • Appendix 3- Quantitative Look at Combustion Reactions 172
  • Appendix 4- Leaked Draft Document by Danish Delegates 180
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