Doing, Allowing, and Precaution

Environmental Ethics 29 (4):339-358 (2007)
Many environmental policies seem to rest on an implicit distinction between doing and allowing. For example, it is generally thought worse to drive a speciesto extinction than to fail to save a species that is declining through no fault of our own, and worse to pollute the air with chemicals that trigger asthma attacks thanto fail to remove naturally occurring allergens such as pollen and mold. The distinction between doing and allowing seems to underlie certain versions of the precautionary principle, and insofar as the precautionary principle rests on this distinction, it diverges from direct consequentialist approaches to risk management.There are two ways in which such reliance on the doing/allowing distinction may be defended: by appeal to indirect consequentialist considerations, and by appeal to deontological considerations. Neither approach is unproblematic; however, retention of a distinction between doing and allowing in environmentalpolicy is consistent with the widespread intuition that there is something prima facie valuable about the world as we find it
Keywords Applied Philosophy  General Interest
Categories (categorize this paper)
ISBN(s) 0163-4275
DOI 10.5840/enviroethics200729438
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history
Request removal from index
Download options
Our Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy     Papers currently archived: 28,191
External links

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.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Similar books and articles
Doing, Allowing, and the State.Adam Omar Hosein - 2014 - Law and Philosophy 33 (2):235-264.
Doing and Allowing, Threats and Sequences.Fiona Woollard - 2008 - Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 89 (2):261–277.
Prudent Precaution in Clinical Trials of Nanomedicines.Gary E. Marchant & Rachel A. Lindor - 2012 - Journal of Law, Medicine & Ethics 40 (4):831-840.
The Limits of Precaution.Sven Ove Hansson - 1997 - Foundations of Science 2 (2):293-306.

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

12 ( #378,577 of 2,172,040 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

1 ( #325,337 of 2,172,040 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.

Other forums