Human Ecology Final

1. According to your textbook, people can still “live well” when they desire things that are impossible to reconcile with the unethical consequences of consuming them. (Points : 4)




Question 2.2. Humans in the Anthropocene have emerged as perhaps the most dominant force on the planet. As a result: (Points : 4)

humans must assume moral responsibility and be held accountable for the consequences of their actions.

Earth has become a more hospitable place for humans.

human equity and social justice has prevailed.

the environmental well-being of Earth has improved.

none of the above.


Question 3.3. Knowing that a factory discharges a dangerous chemical into the air or water does not necessarily prevent the factory from continuing to discharge it, if the dominant paradigm places over-riding importance on the economic activity that the factory generates. (Points : 4)




Question 4.4. Which strategy or strategies are wisest for a healthy Human-Ecology in the Anthropocene? (Points : 4)

Hope that a novel technological miracle will allow us to continue with “Business as Usual” and the Paradigm of Unlimited Growth.

Commit to working with

the life processes that have evolved for over four billion years on Earth.

Maintain ecosystem health and biodiversity.

Ignore physical and ecological limits.

Keep pollution levels below the Earth’s ability to break them down.

All of the above except

“a” and “d”.


Question 5.5. Human ecology concerns itself with answering two questions: “What makes life possible?”, and “What makes life worthwhile?” Whether approached through sociology or environmental science, eventually the same answer is reached: What’s good for the Earth is also good for human health and happiness. (Points : 4)




Question 6.6. Discuss the need for modern society to shift to a paradigm of Sufficiency, within which just

and sustainable wellbeing for all of creation becomes the norm. How can this be achieved on an Earth That Is Full? Include consideration of both ecological, and social and environmental justice and human equity issues. (Points : 20)


Question 7.7. Compare and Contrast the “Respect Nature”, “Ownership and Control of Environments”, and “Landscapes in the Service of Remote Consumers” paradigms. In your response, be certain to include:

The effects on the environment of each paradigm.

The social justice and human equity implications of each paradigm.

From a Human-Ecological perspective, what are the good and bad points of each paradigm? (Points : 20)


Question 8.8. Explain why the belief in the possibility of unlimited growth must give way to a new paradigm, if we are to live well in the Anthropocene. Include an explanation of why programs to bring the poor up to the levels of profligacy enjoyed by the rich are impossible. (Points : 20)


Question 9.9. Discuss the problems of industrial commodification of food systems and the solutions to those problems. Explain how engaged ecological citizens, who are prepared to demand local sustainable food systems, could extend relevant ethical principles and standards to distant lands and remote land managers and have expectations that the systems of production that supply them are also just and sustainable.