Politics & Ecological Sustainability the Article

  • Length: 10 pages
  • Sources: 20
  • Subject: Transportation - Environmental Issues
  • Type: Article
  • Paper: #32982653

Excerpt from Article :

" (Patterson, 2003)

However, such hypothesis are not scientifically testable unless populations in Malta are surveyed to determine the influence Western political thought has had on their own belief system and on how Malta citizens see their ability to influence political decision-making. According to Bebbington (2009), "The environment has become both a vehicle and an objective of contentious Focus on institutional failures is very much in line with arguments around theories of the resource curse, which have tended to converge on the centrality of institutional quality, governance, and politics in determining the extent to which resource dependence fosters or frustrates development." (Bebbington, 2009)

Ecological economists have brought into the mix, eco-social and economic reason (Little, 2000). According to Little (2000), "The economic imperative of productivity is totally different from the ecological imperative of resource conservation. Ecological rationality consists in satisfying material needs in the best way possible with as small a quantity as possible of goods with a high use-value and durability, and thus doing so with a minimum of work, capital and natural resources." (Little, 2000)

According to Little (2000) "The economic imperative of productivity is totally different from the ecological imperative of resource conservation. Ecological rationality consists in satisfying material needs in the best way possible with as small a quantity as possible of goods with a high use-value and durability, and thus doing so with a minimum of work, capital and natural resources." (Little, 2000)

As stated previously, corporate entities are attempting to be more ecologically responsible and have thus implemented practices that seek to establish parameters that enable profit but do not yield a trade-off with a decreasing in ecological sustainability. According to Fenwick (2007), "With the growing interest in corporate social responsibility, organizations since the early 1990s have been seeking to develop practices and policies that are more ecological, and sustainable and socially responsible (Business for Social Responsibility, 2006). Yet despite prevalent business usage of "sustainability" rhetoric, critics have argued that the overall impact has been unremarkable in achieving real goals of sustainable practice within organizations (Daley and Cobb, 1989; Dobbin, 1999; Henderson, 2002)." (Fenwick, 2007)

Additionally, Fenwick (2007), "Levels of understanding and genuine commitment to ecological ideals range widely across and within companies, as apparently does internal resistance (Hemingway and Maclagan, 2004, McWilliams et al., 2006). In particular, the challenge is not only helping people to learn practices of ecological sustainability, but also to learn a particular ethical orientation to their work. That is, organizational development for ecological sustainability appears to be closely linked to a general ethical commitment to the primacy of sustainability principles shared among organizational members -- a commitment that ignites and supports the implementation of such practices." (Fenwick, 2007)

Corporations must make the monetary commitment by establishing comprehensive strategies that limit ecological destruction as a function of their operations. The lip-service that corporations in many cases, are still using to appease activists and local residents is no longer the status-quo nor will be accepted by a burgeoning political establishment that is anti-ecological destruction.

Sustainability, therefore, needs to have a more concerted definition to where corporate CEO's and executive leadership across the board is familiar with what sustainability practices really incorporate. According to Norton & Toman (1997), "Admonitions to decision makers to "act sustainably" founder on conceptual ambiguities that transcend disciplinary boundaries and affect the definition and assessment of sustainability." (Norton, Toman, 1997)

Sustainable practices are not easily achievable as many have theorized on how to achieve a long-term success plan. According to Downs (2000), "How to achieve an intergenerational allocation of environmental wealth has been described as the "principal problem of sustainability." (McMahon & Mrozek, 1997, p. 502). The goals of present-generation and intergenerational equite are undermined by the social characteristic expounded by Hardin's (1968) 'Tragedy of the commons' article, which may also explain the formation of special-interest groups or cartels: economically rational individuals seek to maximize their personal benefits by exploiting natural capital (common goods without property rights) such that the aggregate cost to society is greater than the sum of the individual benefits." (Downs, 2000)

National political structures are infringing at a greater rate than previously, restrictions of corporate activity that is consistent with ecological degradation. According to Stead, (1994) "They say "…internal paradigm shifts and transformational change are necessary as companies attempt to adjust to the rapidly changing world of green politics and markets" (Post and Altman, 1992, p. 13). Further, as humankind progresses through the twenty-first century, business organizations will probably have to pass through two progressively difficult stages of change in order to achieve true ecological sustainability." (Stead, 1994)

According to Stead (1994), "The first stage, which we call the "profit stage," is based on the idea that ecological concern is good for business and, thus, fits somewhat comfortably into the current myth of economic wealth. Real change can occur, but within basically the same system of ideas. Firms can ask themselves, "How can we improve our wealth by being environmentally sensitive?" (Stead, 1994)

Political organizations including the United Nation's is playing a larger role to mitigate the damage to ecological biota caused by pollution. According to Youngquist (1999), "When the concept of sustainable development was presented by the United Nation's World Commission on Environment and Development in 1987, attention shifted to environmental concerns. However, the concept was one of balance: the environment and the economy cannot be treated separately. Material needs must be met in ways that preserve the biosphere, and concern for the biosphere must recognize the material needs." (Youngquist, 1999)

In conclusion, according to Youngquiest, (1999), "It is clear that environmental, social, and economic concerns must be considered together. Ecological sustainability must provide a foundation upon which forest management worldwide can contribute significantly to economic and social sustainability. Conservation and wise management of forests can promote sustainability by providing for a wide variety of uses, values, products, and services, and by enhancing society's capability to make sustainable choices. (Youngquist, 1999)


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