David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Environmental Ethics 7 (3):241-256 (1985)
Holistic accounts of the natural environment in environmental ethics fail to stress the distinction between the concepts of comnlunity and organism. Aldo Leopold’s “Land Ethic” adds to this confusion, for it can be interpreted as promoting either a community or an organic model of nature. The difference between the two concepts lies in the degree of autonomy possessed by constituent entities within the holistic system. Members within a community are autonomous, while the parts of an organism are not. Different moral conclusions and environmental policies may result from this theoretical distinction. Treating natural entities as parts of an organism downgrades their intrinsic value as individual natural beings, since the only relevant moral criterion in an organic environmental ethic is the instrumental value that each natural entity has for the system. This ethic allows instances of the “substitution problem”-the replacement of one entity in an ecosystem by another provided that the overall functioning of the system is notharmed. However, since substitution violates environmentalist principles, for example, calling for respect for the integrity of the entities in a natural system, an organic environmental ethic must be rejected. A community model focuses on both the functional value and the autonomous intrinsie value of natural entities in a system. A community environmental ethic thus avoids the substitution problem
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Katie McShane (2009). Environmental Ethics: An Overview. Philosophy Compass 4 (3):407-420.
Similar books and articles
J. Baird Callicott (1980). Animal Liberation: A Triangular Affair. Environmental Ethics 2 (4):311-338.
Michael P. Nelson (1996). Holists and Fascists and Paper Tigers...Oh My! Ethics and the Environment 1 (2):103 - 117.
Jon N. Moline (1986). Aldo Leopold and the Moral Community. Environmental Ethics 8 (2):99-120.
Roger Paden (1992). Nature and Morality. Environmental Ethics 14 (3):239-251.
Susan Armstrong-Buck (1986). Whitehead's Metaphysical System as a Foundation for Environmental Ethics. Environmental Ethics 8 (3):241-259.
Eric Katz (1987). Searching for Intrinsic Value: Pragmatism and Despair in Environmental Ethics. Environmental Ethics 9 (3):231-241.
Ernest Partridge (1996). Ecological Morality and Nonmoral Sentiments. Environmental Ethics 18 (2):149-163.
John Mizzoni (2004). St. Francis, Paul Taylor, and Franciscan Biocentrism. Environmental Ethics 26 (1):41-56.
Janna Thompson (1990). A Refutation of Environmental Ethics. Environmental Ethics 12 (2):147-160.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads3 ( #308,076 of 1,101,944 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #306,569 of 1,101,944 )
How can I increase my downloads?