Human interference with our environment is excessive, and the situation is rapidly worsening due to our population growth. Policies must therefore be changed. These policies affect basic economic, technological, and ideological structures. The way to these policy changes is in the
"Deep Ecology" ecosophy (110). Deep ecology is a philosophical way of looking at our environmental problems that was founded in 1972 by Norwegian Arne Naess, a former head of the philosophy department at the University of Oslo. Naess' writings show us what is wrong with the world and give us a blueprint by which we can bring about change. In its most basic form, deep ecology is a necessary wisdom, requiring humans to see themselves as part of the bigger picture. That picture is our sacred relationship with Earth and all beings.
Many believe overpopulation, the greenhouse effect, global warming, and loss of habitat are no cause for alarm. Some, in fact, claim media and politicians perpetuate the hysteria regarding our environmental decline because they have something to gain by painting such a bad picture. Countless studies I have read or am personally involved with, however, have convinced me these problems are real and can be resolved if the following are supported:
1. Continued inquiry into the appropriate human roles on our planet.
2. Root cause analysis of unsustainable practices.
3. Reduction of human consumption.
4. Conservation and restoration of ecosystems.
5. A life of committed action for Earth. (Oslo 1973)
The solution to our ecosystem mess is through the principles Dr. Naess has developed. These principles begin with a statement that all life, human and nonhuman, has intrinsic value. This means everything about life is valuable, including individuals, cultures, species, habitats, and populations. Another principle states that the diversity of life forms contribute to our appreciation... Continues...