Each volume in the Classic Edition Sources series brings together selections of enduring intellectual value—classic articles, book excerpts, and research studies—that have shaped a discipline of study. Edited for length and level, the selections are organized topically around the major areas of study within the discipline. Selected World Wide Web sites are included, and an annotated table of contents provides a quick and easy review of the selections. Every Classic Edition Sources volume is supported by an online Instructor’s Resource Guide that provides a complete synopsis of each selection, guidelines for discussing the selection in class, and testing materials. For more information, visit the Classic Edition Sources series website (www.mhhe.com/classicedition).
Part 1: An Overview of Environmental Studies1 Preservation vs. Conservation
Selection 1 GEORGE PERKINS MARSH, from Man and Na-ture, (Charles Scribner, 1864).
"We are, even now, breaking up the floor and wainscoting and doors and window frames of our dwelling, for fuel to warm our bodies and seethe our pottage, and the world cannot afford to wait till the slow and sure progress of exact science has taught it a better economy."
Selection 2 JOHN MUIR, "Hetch Hetchy Valley" from The Mountains of Califor-nia (Houghton Mifflin, 1916).
"Dam Hetch Hetchy! As well dam for watertanks the people’s cathedrals and churches, for no holier temple has ever been consecrated by the heart of man."
Selection 3 GIFFORD PINCHOT, "Principles of Conservation" from The Fight for Conservation (Doubleday, 1910).
"Conservation does mean provision for the future, but it means also and first of all the recognition of the right of the present generation to the fullest necessary use of all the resources with which this country is so abundantly blessed."
Selection 4 ALDO LEOPOLD, from A Sand County Almanac: And Sketches Here and There (Oxford University Press, 1977).
"The land ethic simply enlarges the boundaries of the community to include soils, waters, plants, and animals, or collectively the land."
2 Fundamental Causes of Environmental Problems
Selection 5 PAUL S. MARTIN, from "Prehistoric Overkill: The Global Model," in Quaternary Extinctions: A Prehistoric Revolution, Paul S. Martin and Richard G. Klein (Eds), University of Arizona Press, Tucson, 1984.
"On a global scale the late Pleistocene extinction patterns appear to track the prehistoric movements or activities of Homo sapiens much more closely than any widely agreed-upon pattern of es-pecially severe global climatic change."
Selection 6 LYNN WHITE, Jr., from "The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Cri-sis," Science (March 10, 1967).
"Christianity, in absolute contrast to ancient paganism and Asia’s religions (except, per-haps, Zoroastrianism), not only established a dualism of man and nature but also insisted that it is God’s will that man exploit nature for his proper ends."
Selection 7 GARRETT HARDIN, from "The Tragedy of the Commons," Science (December 13, 1968).
"Ruin is the destination toward which all men rush, each pursuing his own best interest in a society that believes in the freedom of the commons. Freedom in a commons brings ruin to all."
3 Ecosystems and Ecosystem Services
Selection 8 JOHN TEAL AND MILDRED TEAL, from Life and Death of the Salt Marsh (Ballantina Books, 1969).
"The dangers to salt marshes stem from human activities, not natural processes. We de-stroy wetlands and shallow water bottoms directly by dredging, filling, and building. Indirectly we destroy them by pollution."
Selection 9 PETER M. VITOUSEK, HAROLD A. MOONEY, AND JERRY M. MELILLO, from "Human Domination of Earth’s Ecosystems," Science (July 25, 1997).
"[E]ven on the grandest scale, most aspects of the structure and functioning of Earth’s ecosystems cannot be understood without accounting for the strong, often dominant influence of human-ity."
Selection 10 MILLENNIUM ECOSYSTEM ASSESSMENT, from Ecosystems and Human Well-being: Synthesis. (Island Press, 2005).
"Over the past 50 years, humans have changed ecosystems more rapidly and extensively than in any comparable period of time in human history, largely to meet rapidly growing demands for food, fresh water, timber, fiber, and fuel. . . . The full costs . . . are only now becoming apparent."
Part 2: Energy4 Energy and Ecosystems
Selection 11 CHANCEY JUDAY, from "The Annual Energy Budget of an Inland Lake," Ecology (October 1940).
"The annual energy budget of a lake may be regarded as comprising the energy received from sun and sky each year and the expenditures or uses which the lake makes of this annual income of radia-tion."
Selection 12 JOHN M. FOWLER, from Energy and the Environment. (McGraw-Hill, 1975).
"Heat energy cannot be completed converted to mechanical energy. In any conversion some of is irrevocably lost; it remains in the form of heat and cannot be reclaimed for useful pur-poses."
5 Renewable and Nonrenewable Energy
Selection 13 MARK Z. JACOBSON AND MARK A. DELUCCHI, from "A Path to Sustainable Energy by 2030," Scientific American (November 2009).
"With extremely aggressive policies, all existing fossil-fuel capacity could theortically be retired and replaced in [20–30 years], but with more modest and likely policies full replacement may take 40 to 50 years. Either way, clear leadership is needed, or else nations will keep trying technologies promoted by industries rather than vetted by scientists."
Part 3: Environmental Degradation6 Forests, Wilderness, and Wildlife
Selection 14 WILLIAM O. DOUGLAS, from Sierra Club v. Morton, U.S. Supreme Court, 405 U.S. 727, 1972
"Those who hike the Appalachian Trail into Sunfish Pond, New Jersey, and camp or sleep there, or run the Allagash in Maine, or climb the Guadalupes in West Texas, or who canoe and portage the Quetico Superior in Minnesota, certainly should have standing to defend those natural wonders before courts or agencies, though they live 8,000 miles away."
Selection 15 WILLIAM CRONON, "The Trouble With Wilderness; or, Getting Back to the Wrong Nature" from Uncommon Ground: Toward Reinventing Nature (W.W. Norton, 1995).
"The more one knows of its peculiar history, the more one realizes that wilderness is not quite what it seems. Far from being the one place on earth that stands apart from humanity, it is quite profoundly a human creation—indeed, the creation of very particular human cultures at very particular moments in human history."
Selection 16 SECRETARIAT OF THE CONVENTION ON BIOLOGICAL DIVERSITY, from Global Biodiversity Outlook 3 (2010); http://gbo3.cbd.int/.
"The target agreed by the world’s Governments in 2002, ‘to achieve by 2010 a significant reduction of the current rate of biodiversity loss at the global, regional and national level as a contribution to pov-erty alleviation and to the benefit of all life on Earth,’ has not been met. . . . The action taken over the next decade or two . . . will determine whether the relatively stable environmental conditions on which human civilization has depended for the past 10,000 years will continue beyond this century. If we fail to use this opportunity, many ecosystems on the planet will move into new, unprecedented states in which the capacity to provide for the needs of present and future generations is highly uncertain."
Selection 17 BORIS WORM, ET AL., from "Impacts of Biodiversity Loss on Ocean Ecosystem Services," Science (November 3, 2006).
"Our data highlight the societal consequences of an ongoing erosion of diversity that ap-pears to be accelerating on a global scale. This trend is of serious concern because it projects the global collapse of all taxa currently fished by the mid-21st century."
Selection 18 JOHN VANDERMEER AND IVETTE PERFECTO, from "Re-thinking Rain Forests: Biodiversity and Social Justice," Food First Backgrounder (Summer 1995).
"Our position is that there is multiple causation of rain forest destruction, with logging, peasant agriculture, export agriculture, domestic sociopolitical forces, international socio-economic relations, and other factors intricately connected with one another in a ‘web of causality.’"
Selection 19 JOHN EVELYN, from Fumifugium: Or the Inconvenience of the Aer and Smoake of London Dissipated (1661).
"It is this horrid Smoake which obscures out Churches, and makes our Palaces look old, which fouls our Clothes, and corrupts the Waters, so as the very Rain, and refreshing Dews which fall in the sev-eral Seasons, precipitate this impure vapour, which, with its black and tenacious quality, spots amd contaminates whatever is exposed to it."
Selection 20 BEVERLY PAIGEN, from "Controversy at Love Canal," Hastings Center Report (June 1982).
"[T]he Love Canal controversy was predominantly political in nature, and it raised a series of questions that had more to do with values than science."
Selection 21 MARGARET A. PALMER AND J. DAVID ALLEN, from "Re-storing Rivers," Issues in Science & Technology (Winter 2006).
"Despite [many] efforts to minimize the environmental impact of developing the land or extracting natural resources (such as mining), streams and rivers have continued to degrade. The controls have simply not been able to keep up with the rate of development and associated watershed dam-age."
Selection 22 ORRIN H. PILKEY AND ROB YOUNG, from The Rising Sea (Shearwater 2009).
"Of all the ongoing and expected changes from global warming. . . the increase in the vol-ume of the oceans and accompanying rise in the level of the sea will be the most immediate, the most certain, the most widespread, and the most economically visible in its effects."
9 Global Warming and Ozone Depletion
Selection 23 THE INTERGOVERNMENTAL PANEL ON CLIMATE CHANGE, from Climate Change 2007: The Physical Science Basis, Summary for Policymakers. IPCC Fourth Assessment Report. (February 2007).
"Warming of the climate system is unequivocal, as is now evident from observations of increases in global average air and ocean temperatures, widespread melting of snow and ice, and rising global av-erage sea level."
Selection 24 BILL MCKIBBEN, from "The Most Important Number on Earth," Mother Jones (November/December 2008).
"It’s not clear if a vocal world citizenry will be enough to beat inertia and vested interest. If 350 [ppm CO2] emerges as the clear bar for success or failure, then the odds of the international community taking effective action increase, though the odds are still long. Still, these ar the lines it is our turn to speak. To be human in 2008 is to rise in defense of the planet we have known and the civilization it has spawned."
Part 4: Human Health and the Environment10 Food
Selection 25 LESTER R. BROWN, from "Could Food Shortages Bring Down Civi-lization?" Scientific American (May 2009).
"The biggest threat to global stability is the potential for food crises in poor countries to cause governmental collapse. Those crises are brought on by ever worsening environmental degrada-tion."
Selection 26 N. V. FEDOROFF, ET AL., from "Radically Rethinking Agri-culture for the 21st Century," Science (February 12, 2010).
"The heart of new agricultural paradigms for a hotter and more populous world must be systems that close the loop of nutrient flows from microorganisms and plants and animals and back, powered and irrigated as much as possible by sunlight and seawater. . . . If we are to resume progress toward eliminating hun-ger, we must scale up and further build on the innovative approaches already under development, and we must do so immediately."
Selection 27 ROBERT VAN DEN BOSCH, from The Pesticide Conspir-acy (Doubleday 1978).
"Integrated control is simply rational pest control: the fitting together of information, deci-sion-making criteria, methods, and materials with naturally occurring pest mortality into effective and redeeming pest-management systems."
Selection 28 SANDRA STEINGRABER, from Living Downstream: An Ecolo-gist Looks at Cancer and the Environment. (Addison-Welsey, 1997).
"Several obstacles, I believe, prevent us from addressing cancer’s environmental roots. An obsession with genes and heredity is one."
Selection 29 THEO COLBORN, DIANNE DUMANOSKI, AND JOHN PETERSON MYERS, from Our Stolen Future (Dutton, 1996).
"The pressing question is whether humans are already suffering damage from half a cen-tury of exposure to endocrine-disrupting synthetic chemicals. Have these man-made chemicals already altered in-dividual destinies by scrambling the chemical messages that guide development?"
Part 5: Environment and Society12 Political and Economic Issues
Selection 30 MARK SAGOFF, from "At the Shrine of Our Lady of Fatima, or Why Political Questions Are Not All Economic," Arizona Law Review (1981). (3rd ed. Acknowledgments page credits Mark Sagoof, The Economy of the Earth: Philosophy,Law, and the Environment, Cambridge University Press 1988).
"How shall we balance efficiency against moral, cultural, and aesthetic values in policy for the workplace and the environment? No better way has been devised to do this than by legislative debate end-ing in a vote. This is very different from a cost-benefit analysis terminating in a bottom line."
Selection 31 ROBERT D. BULLARD, from "Environmental Justice for All," Crisis (The New), January/February 2003.
"If this nation is to achieve environmental justice, the environment in urban ghettoes, bar-rios, rural ‘poverty pockets’ and on reservations must be given the same protection as is provided to affluent sub-urbs. All communities—Black or White, rich or poor, urban or suburban—deserve to be protected from the ravages of pollution."
Selection 32 JANET N. ABRAMOWITZ, from "Putting a Value on Nature’s ‘Free’ Services," World Watch (January/February 1998).
"The gross domestic product (GDP) . . . supposedly measures the value of the goods and services produced in a nation. But the most valuable goods and services—the ones provided by nature, on which all else rests—are measured poorly or not at all."
13 Population Control Controversies
Selection 33 DAVE FOREMAN, from "The Human Population Explosion and the Future of Life," The Rewilding Institute, (March 11, 2008).
"The shocking, explosive growth of human population has not just short-term but also very long-term catastrophic consequences. Indeed, should the vast, sprawling human population break off major limbs of the tree of life instead of just plucking twigs and leaves, our impact will last forever in terms of Earthly life."
Selection 34 BETSY HARTMANN, from Reproductive Rights and Wrongs: The Global Politics of Population Control, rev. ed. (South End Press, 1995).
"Population control profoundly distorts our world view, and negatively affects people in the most intimate areas of their lives. Instead of promoting ethics, empathy, and true reproductive choice, it en-courages us to condone coercion. And even on the most practical level, it is no solution to the serious economic, political, and environmental problems we face. . . ."
Selection 35 JOEL E. COHEN, "Human Carrying Capacity" from How Many People Can the Earth Support? (W.W. Norton, 1995).
"A number or range of numbers, presented as a constraint independent of human choices, is an inadequate answer to the question ‘How many people can the Earth support?’ While trying to answer this question, I learned to question the question."
14 Environmental Ethics and Worldviews
Selection 36 PAUL W. TAYLOR, from "The Ethics of Respect for Nature," Environmental Ethics (Fall 1981).
"I argue that finally it is the good (well-being, welfare) of individual organisms, consid-ered as entities having inherent worth, that determines our moral relations with the Earth’s wild communities of life."
Selection 37 VANDANA SHIVA, from "Women’s Indigenous Knowledge and Bio-diversity Conservation," in Maria Mies and Vandana Shiva, Ecofeminism (Zed Books 1993).
"In most cultures women have been the custodians of biodiversity. They produce, repro-duce, consume and conserve biodiversity in agriculture."
Selection 38 JARED DIAMOND, from Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (Viking Penguin, 2005).
"It has long been suspected that many of those mysterious abandonments [of ancient ru-ins] were at least partly triggered by ecological problems: people inadvertently destroying the environmental re-sources on which their societies depended. This suspicion of unintended ecological sui-cide—ecocide—has been confirmed by [many] discoveries."