Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Notes - Making Ethical Decisions for a Sustainable Future: An Overview

The following are notes for Working Toward Sustainability Ethical Decision making in a Technological World.

Social Sustainability
  • The Golden Rule
    • We believe we have the right to have our basic needs met
    • extend this right to our neighbors, locally and globally, and to those in the future
  • The Rights of the Vulnerable
    • Care Ethics, obligates us to share responsibility for the welfare of the poor, weak, sick and disenfranchised
    • meets the needs of the present
    • environmental justice
  • The Distributional Principle
    • Ensuring that both advantages and disadvantages equitably distributed
    • fair processes for decision making
  • Chain of Obligation (Expanded Community)
    • distributional justice across temporal boundaries
    • prospects of future generations based on current behavior patterns
    • intergenerational justice for a fair distribution of resources
Ecological Sustainability
  • The Land Ethic
    • provides a basic guideline to judge morality
    • actions must preserve
      • basic integrity
      • stability
      • beauty 
      • of a community
    • land is not a resource but a community
  • The Rights of the Nonhuman World
    • addresses the rights of animals, how individual organisms are treaed
    • animal rights
    • can include plants, and geological formations
Economic Sustainability
  • The Polluter Pays Principle
    • ethical/legal principle ensuring cost of pollution is justly allocated
    • shifts burden to those causing pollution
  • Extended Producer Responsibility
    • EPR (Extended Producer Responsibility)
    • manufacturer's responsible for entire life cycle effect of their products
    • recycling required
  • The Beneficiary Compensates Principle
    • BCP (Beneficiary Compensates Principle)
    • compensate parties to those who ask to forgo development
    • international community pays
  • Full-Cost Accounting
    • objective is to ensure all social and environmental costs of a product or process are identified
    • costs distributed after identification
Integrating the Dimensions of Sustainability
  • The Precautionary and Reversibility Principles
    • Where there is scientific uncertainty regarding technology or activity being implemented
    • pre-emptive action to avert potential threats
      • health
      • environment
    • Reversibility principle
      • ensure that ability to reverse consequences is built into the technology
  • Transparency
    • Good Governance is essential so force nongovernmental organizations to do greater documentation
    • elected officials stand behind campaign promises
    • consequences and components of technology made public

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