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ENVIR 100 Week 3 Notes

by: Rachel Pollard

ENVIR 100 Week 3 Notes ENVIR 100

Rachel Pollard

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Notes from three lectures of week 3!
Introduction to Environmental Studies
Elizabeth E. Wheat
Class Notes
Environmental Studies, Environment
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This 8 page Class Notes was uploaded by Rachel Pollard on Friday October 14, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ENVIR 100 at University of Washington taught by Elizabeth E. Wheat in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 20 views. For similar materials see Introduction to Environmental Studies in Environment at University of Washington.


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Date Created: 10/14/16
Conservation Ideas Monday, October 10, 2016 9:22 AM Review: Waste • Municipal solid waste: category, trends in generation and recycling rates • Where does Seattle's waste go? Landfill, compost, and recycling • Recycling vs down cycling • Tierney's arguments in "The Reign of Recycling" • Global transport of e -waste: sources, destinations, mechanisms • E-waste: health and environmental impacts • Externality • Environmental Externality: The cost (negative consequence) tha t affects a third party who did not participate in the exchange of goods or services o Example • Unregulated pollution in the production process • Overuse of antibiotics in industrial farm animal production • Overfishing in common property water o Externalize the true cost of production - make the product cheaper while others suffer from negative environmental consequences The Basel Convention (1989) and beyond • This is a world environmental convention about issues of waste • Developed nations must notify developing nations of incoming hazardous waste shipments • Many call the convention too weak • The US is one of the only three countries to sign but not ratify the Basel Convention • Basel Ban (1995) forbids hazardous waste shipments to poor countries (but has not taken effect) o Environmental issues on a global scale What Can we do at each level? • Personal-level o Buy fewer electronics o Dispose correctly • Take e-waste to credited recyclers o Advocate for stricter prod uction/regulation rules • Producer-level o Take back laws - you make it, you deal with it: extended producer responsibility o "Design to last" - Design longer lasting, less toxic and more recyclable products in the first place. • Structural-level o Stronger laws and regulations o International regulation (e.g. Basel Convention) o Internalize the true cost of electronic products Conservation Ideas • Where do our ideas about conversation come from and how have they evolved throughout time? Man and Nature Wilderness: The Evolution of Ideas • Environmental historian William Cronon argues that "the sublime idea" and "the frontier idea" at the late 19th century contributed to this shift in how Americans conceptualized wilderness. Wilderness - The Sublime • Transatlantic romanticism • People began looking at nature as something that is sacred, supernatural, and closer to God • Henry David Thoreau o "I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could no t learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." o "In Wilderness is the preservation of the World." • John Muir (1838-1914) o Famous naturalist and famous writer o Advocate for the Yosemite National Park; founder of the S ierra Club o "Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine into trees." o "Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places in play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul." Wilderness -The Frontier • American settlers are moving the West o Modern technologies o They are chasing away the Native people • "American Progress" • Closing of the frontier --> wilderness protection • Nostalgia for a passing frontier way of life • Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) o "I have always said I would not have been President had it not been for my experience in North Dakota." o If every piece of America is cultivated, where do we find the root of our identity and culture o "Of all the questions which can come before this nation, short of the actual preservation of its existence in a great war, there is none which compares in importance with the great central task of leaving this land… Conservation Ideas in the early 20th Century: A Dichotomy • Preservationism o Idealize the preservation of nature in pristine form and have been ambivalent about modern civilization. o Wilderness, the sublime o Nature should be untouched by humans o Represented by John Muir • Strong advocate for the protection of wilderness for nature's own sake • Utilitarianism o Press for "a more benign and efficient use of the natural resources and generally welcome advances in science and technology to such effect." (Pak 2011) o Nature is a resource to humans o Represented by Gifford Pinchot • Strong advocate for sustained use of natural resources Gifford Pinchot (1865 -1946) • "The first principle of conservation is development." • "The greatest good for the greatest number in the long run." • "The object of our forest policy is not to preserve the forests because they are beautiful or because they are refuge for the wild creates of wilderness. The forests are to be used by man. Every other consideration comes secondary." • Yale School of Forestry graduate • 1898: Chief of Division of Forestry in Dept. of Interior • 1901: Chief of the US Forest Service, in Dept. of Agriculture Hetch Hetchy Controversy • A clash between Muir and Pinchot - representing different conservation priorities o First environmental conflict • 1908 proposal to dam the He tch Hetchy Valley for San Francisco's water supply • 1914 began the construction • Current- proposal for restoration "The Best Idea America Ever Had": National Parks • Legacies of this era • Yellowstone National park was established in 1872 as the first national p ark in the US Theodore Roosevelt - Conservation President • Antiquities Act of 1906: authorized president to proclaim historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest in federal ownership as national monuments. • The first conservation president by creating national parks, monuments, and forests. He was able to conserve 230 million acres of land during his term. National Park Service Act, 1916 • It was created in President Woodrow Wilson's term • "To conserve the scenery and the natural and historic objects and the wild life therein (within the national parks) and to provide for the enjoyment of the same in such manner and by such means as will leave them unimpaired for the enjoyment of future generations. " Reflection on National Parks as a model of conservation • Tourism aspect of the parks - utilitarianism • Too spectacular o Not representative • Too unprotected o Overdeveloped • Too misguided o Man-made spaces o Manipulated experience o Displacing wild animals and native people Environmentalism Wednesday, October 12, 2016 9:23 AM Review Conservation Ideas • Wilderness: The evolution of ideas • Key conservation thinkers and their legacies: o Henry David Thoreau o John Muir o Gifford Pinchot o Theodore Roosevelt o Woodrow Wilson • Preservationism & Utilitarianism • Scientific forestry o Principles and negative effects • National Parks o History o As a model of conservation • "The Trouble with Wilderness": main arguments • Which president was influential on the conservation of American wild lands in the late 19th century and the early 20th century? - Theodore Roosevelt • Late 19th century - 1930s: wilderness preservation • 1950s-1970s: concerns with ecology and the everyday environment • What are the key factors leading to the modern environmental movement? The Modern Environmental Movement • 1930s - wilderness preservation • 1960s - concerns with ecology and the everyday environment - "environmental movement" Key Factors to the Modern Environmental M ovement • Understanding of Ecology • "Silent Spring" o Written by Rachel Carson • Satellite image of the Earth • Other factors Understanding Ecology • Eugene Odum and Howard Odum are the founding fathers of ecology • Leading early ecologists • Pioneered the concept of " ecosystems" • "Fundamentals of Ecology", 1953 • Energy dynamics in ecosystems • "Homeostatsis" Silent Spring: Rachel Carson • Critique of America's chemical dependency (pesticides) • Bioaccumulation of toxins in wildlife and humans, cauisng cancer and genetic defe cts • Human activities disturbed the "web of life" (ecological interdependence) • DDT on elm trees --> eaten by earth worms --> eaten by robins 1970s: first photo of Earth from the moon's surface, December 7, 1972 • "From the perspective of space our planet ha s no national boundaries. It is very beautiful, but also very fragile. And it is the special responsibility of the human race to preserve it." -President Jimmy Carter Other Factors • Increased mobility (automobiles) • Suburbanization o City and nature intermix • Decline in natural resources • Loss of wilderness • Postwar culture of nature consumption • Public media • Increasing incidents of environmental hazards • Radical political climate • Others… What are the main influences of the modern environmental movement? • A push for environmental legislation o NEPA, EPA, key environmental legislation • Strong public concerns for the environment o First Earth Day o Mainstream environmental groups o Concerns for the environment > the economy • Diversification within environmentalism National Environmental Policy Act • NEPA, 1970 o First piece of environmental regulation o Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) required for all federal projects o Public comment period and hearings required for any project receiving federal funding o Creation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) o Thorough study of potential impact of project must be conducted and made public Environmental Protection Agenecy (EPA) • Established on December 2, 1970 by President Richard Nixon • Environmental regulation and law enforc ement • Review Environmental Impact Statements (EIS) • Programs: air, chemicals and toxics, climate change, emergencies, health and safety, greener living, land and cleanup, pesticides, waste, water • Established as a result of the environmental movement Environmental Legislation • Clean Air Act • Clean Water Act o Water was so polluted due to the lack of regulation o Everything was dumped into the water because it was not owned by anyone o There's now regulations about how to treat waste water o It has greatly increased the water quality • Endangered Species Act o If there is an endangered species on your land, the federal government will watch you to make sure it's habitat is not destroyed. o There's a lot of controversy on the list of endangered species and the pieces of criteri a for assessing each species • Water Pollution Control Act • Federal Insecticide, Rodenticide, and Fungicide Act • Coastal Management Act • Marine Mammals Protection Act • Energy Policy and Conservation Act • Toxic Substances Control Act • Resource Conservation and Recovery Act o Most of these acts were signed by President Richard Nixon First Earth Day • April 22, 1970 • Initiated by Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson • As an environmental teach -in • 20 million Americans participated in peaceful demonstrations in favor of envir onmental reform • Joined by universities, colleges, primary and secondary schools • Now observed by 192 countries worldwide, coordinated by the Earth Day Network Mainstream Environmental Groups • Growth in membership in the 1970s • Focus on legislation, regulator y policy, lawsuits, and elections Strong Concerns for the Environment • In 1985, more people thought that protection of the environment should be given priority over economic growth, but in 2008, it began to switch. Priority for either economic or the enviro nment was higher, never both of them could a priority. Mainstream Environmentalism • Main concerns: to preserve the environment T • Key factors leading to the modern environmental movement • Main influences o A push for environmental legislation • NEPA, EPA, key environmental legislation Diversification • Environmental Justice • Deep Ecology (Radical Environmentalism) • Green Consumerism • Corporate Environmentalism • Ecofeminism • Free Market Environmentalism • Environmental Democracy • Animal Rights Activism • Bioregionalism • Gaia Environmental Justice • Pollution not distributed randomly, but disproportionately concentrated in areas where poor people or people of color live. • Ties social justice to environmentalism • Case 1: Love Canal o New York, 1978 o Women and working class community o School was built on top of toxic dump site o Children were getting sick • Case 2: Warren County • North Carolina, 1982 o African American Community o Against the dumping of PCBs o Environmentalism racism • 1987 Study o 3 out of 5 African Americans live near toxi c waste dumps What factors contributed to the uneven distribution of pollution sites? Deep Ecology (Radical Environmentalism) • All living organisms, both human and nonhuman, have equal claims on the earth • Dave Foreman and Earth First! o 1980s old-growth forest conservation against timber harvesting in the PNW • Tree spiking at Oregon's Siskyyou Mountains, 1983 o Glines Canyon Dam and Glen Canyon dam: cracks • Public art for protesting • Greenpeace o Goal: "to ensure the ability of the Earth to nurture life in all its diversity" o Key focuses: global warming, deforestation, overfishing, commercial whaling, genetic engineering, anti-nuclear issues o Strategy: direction action, lobbying, research Green Consumerism • Consumers consciously choose environmentally friendly products that minimize damage to the environment • Examples: o Organic food o Energy-saving appliances o Biodegradable cleaning products o Toiletries with reusable parts o Fabrics made from recycled plastics • Is this also a class issue? o Green or environmentally friendly products can be more expensive o Issue of social justice o Maybe the regular products are too cheap but they don't take into account Environmental Justice Friday, October 14, 2016 9:31 AM Environmentalism • American Frontier - westward movement and the development of the nature/culture divide Environmental Justice • "no group of people, including racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic groups, should bear a disproportionate share of the negative environmental consequences resulting from indu strial, municipal, and commercial operations; or the execution of federal, state, local and tribal programs and policies" - US EPA Environmental Justice has many forms • Exposure to risk o Waste, pollution, consequences of climate change o Solid waste, waste water that finds its way into drinking water, air pollution o Exposure to the consequences of climate change o Are certain groups of people disproportionately exposed to risk as a consequence of climate change? • Access to Environmental Resour ces o Water Privatization o Destruction of Forest o Unmitigated displacement • Of people away from the environmental resources they rely on Cancer Alley • Toxins as a result of oil refineries • This region is called caner alley because so many people along the belt o f refineries and plastic industries are getting cancer • Disproportionately communities of color • Risk of getting cancer is ten times greater in this area than on average Exposure to Risk • Refineries • Plastic polymer industries (chlorine, benzene) • Dry-cleaning chemical manufacturers • Strongest predicator of whether or not you live near one of these areas: race How can we address environmental injustice? • Equity o Education • People may not know that they live in a place where cancer development is more common or children are more likely to get asthma o Opportunity o Access to services (libraries, healthcare) • How to get critical services into these areas o Healthy food o Clean water o A toxic free environment o Economic Dakota Access Pipeline • Example of a group of people fighting environmental injustice • Federal government involvement Why is there environmental injustice? Environmental Justice impacts us in our home • In the Seattle of City, there is a homeless epide mic • Directly tied to issues around housing o Housing as gotten dramatically more expensive o People who are on the edge of being able to pay rent lose their homes • People living under I-5 are exposed to toxins that are dangerous


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