Environment and Society

This book brought up a good number of interesting topics to talk about. Because this book brought up so many things I will just bring up a couple of interesting points form the different chapters. In chapter two they are talking a lot about population growth over time which is interesting. I also found the segment that was talking about finding the ecological footprint and how it could be done on a small scale, such as an individual calculating it, or on the larger scale, which could be calculating it for an entire country. Chapter three talks about green products and markets. It was interesting to read about different “Cap and Trade” methods that could be used to offset the negative impacts of environmental impacts. Personally my favorite chapter was chapter 4. I really find the tragedy of commons concept very interesting. It was interesting to see the concept applied to the “prisoner’s dilemma.” I had never heard of it described like that before but that analogy does a good job describing the relation. The question brought up at the end of this chapter was interesting to me. “Can we ‘scale up’ from the local commons to the global commons?” It nicely brought together the ideas discussed early on in the chapter to the ideas about the scale of environmental regulation brought up at the end of the chapter. Chapter five was also interesting to read. It was cool to see the environmental side tied to the ethical side. It was interesting when it talked about deep ecology which considered the deep ecological questions. This chapter did a good job talking about the different environmental ethical view points. Chapter six talked about risk and how that is gauged in perceived. It was also interesting to see how culture plays into the ways of thinking about risk, which is not universal across different cultures! Chapter seven talked about the political history and how that is connected to economic trends. It was interesting to see how many of the environmental justice movements are led by women. Chapter eight was also highly interesting. It talked about how many parts of the environment that we deem natural have had human intervention and may not actually be natural. I liked the examples the book used that represented this happening. The ones brought about North Africa, Australia, and even parts of the united states were interesting.


Chapter 12- Uranium.

This chapter like the rest covered a large amount of material. It started by giving an introduction to the history of Uranium and the use of it. An interesting question was brought up in this portion of the chapter too which was,”whether [radioactivity] will benefit mankind, or whether the knowledge will be helpful”-Zoellner. This question brings in the ethical question of using uranium due to the health risks of working or being exposed to it. This chapter brought up a lot about the different uses of uranium over time and how some uses such as nuclear power plants is not too bad, things like nuclear bombs can have a very extensive impact. The chapter goes on to talk about the risks associated with the mining and dumping of the radioactive waste. The idea of calculating the risk assessment with working in the mines and actually using uranium is a commonly debated issue. Specific areas that have had issues relating to the mining of uranium disposal were discussed in great detail to emphasize the conventionality of this topic.

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