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Terms and Definitions Worksheet

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Terms and Definitions Worksheet
Write brief descriptions for each of the following terms. If you use an outside source to define them, include an APA citation for the source.

Scientific method “The way a scientist approaches a problem (by formulating a hypothesis and then testing it by means of an experiment)” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-13). This means that an individual uses a possible outcome to analyze and determine if the results are possible.
Environmental science “The interdisciplinary study of how humanity interacts with other organisms and the nonliving physical environment” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-6). An analysis of the interconnections between living and nonliving species.
Anthropocentrism “Focusing primarily or exclusively on human needs and interests” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-1). This means that an individual is self-centered, only worried about their needs or the needs of the humans.
Biocentrism “Focusing on all life-forms as equally important” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-2). This means that an individual believes that all species are one, and that all live is valuable.
Dualism “The state of being dual or consisting of two parts; division into two” (Dualism, 2012). This means that one was split into two equal parts.
Ecocentrism “The view or belief that environmental concerns should take precedence over the needs and rights of human beings considered in isolation” (Ecocentrism, n.d.). This theory means the environment, to some individuals, is more important than other species and should be held at a higher value than others.
Ecology “The study of systems that includes interrelationships among organisms and between organisms and their environment” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-5). This is a study of how all species are intertwined and how these species need each other to survive.
Ecophilosophy “Functions in the philosophy of science and means the theory and methodology of ecology” (Dolêga, n.d.). This is the how and why ecology works the way that it does.
Ethics “The branch of philosophy that deals with human values” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-6). This is what drives an individual to make the decision based on the issues at hand.
Hedonism “The doctrine that pleasure or happiness is the highest good” (Hedonism, 2012). This means that an individual believes that his only or her happiness is all that matters.
Holism “The theory that whole entities, as fundamental components of reality, have an existence other than as the mere sum of their parts” (Holism, 2012). This means that an individual does not look only at the parts of an item.
Individualism “A social theory advocating the liberty, rights, or independent action of the individual” (Individualism, 2012). This means that an individual has the rights to be whom he or she desires.
Materialism “Preoccupation with or emphasis on material objects, comforts, and considerations, with a disinterest in or rejection of spiritual, intellectual, or cultural values” (Materialism, 2012). This means that an individual only cares for material possession, not feelings.
Metaphysical “Pertaining to or of the nature of metaphysics” (Metaphysical, 2012). This means that an individual looks at the physical reality of things around him or her.
Minimalism “Design or style in which the simplest and fewest elements are used to create the maximum effect” (Minimalism, 2012). This is what an individual does when wanting only to use a limited numbers of items or resources.
Monism “Any of various theories holding that there is only one basic substance or principle as the ground of reality, or that reality consists of a single element” (Monism, 2012). This is a theory that everything revolves around one center item.
Ethical extensionism “Arguments in environmental ethics that moral standing ought to be extended to things (animals, plants, species, the earth) that traditionally are not thought of as having moral standing” (Ethical extensionism, n.d.). This is the belief that the values, and practices of humans should be extended to all living and nonliving species.
Pluralism “A theory that there is more than one basic substance or principle” (Pluralism, 2012). This means that an individual could have more than one belief or feeling.
Naturalism “The view of the world that takes account only of natural elements and forces, excluding the supernatural or spiritual” (Naturalism, 2012). This is a theory that looks at how nature affects the world.
Normative “Of or pertaining to a norm, especially an assumed norm regarded as the standard of correctness in behavior, speech, writing, etc.” (Normative, 2012). This is what is believed to be standard. Everything else in the world is based on this norm.
Pragmatic “Of or pertaining to a practical point of view or practical considerations” (Pragmatic, 2012). This is something that gives alternative solutions that make better sense than a hypothetical decision.

Relativism “Any theory holding that criteria of judgment are relative, varying with individuals and their environments” (Relativism, 2012). This is a theory that shows an individual what is important based on his or her environment.
Utilitarian “Of, pertaining to, or adhering to the doctrine of utilitarianism” (Utilitarian, 2012). This means that a decision should be chosen based on the best solution for a large group.
Environmental justice “The right of every citizen, regardless of age, race, gender, social class, or other factor, to adequate protection from environmental hazards” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-5). This means that all individuals have equal rights to protect themselves from the harmful elements of nature.
Fossil fuels “Combustible deposits in Earth’s crust, composed of the remnants (fossils) of prehistoric organisms that existed millions of years ago. Coal, oil (petroleum), and natural gas are the three types of fossil fuel” (Raven, Berg, & Hassenzahl, 2010, p. G-6). These are the decomposed bodies of organisms, which have been pressed together to form gases under the earth’s surface.
Renewable energy “Any naturally occurring, theoretically inexhaustible source of energy, as biomass, solar, wind, tidal, wave, and hydroelectric power, that is not derived from fossil or unclear fuel” (Renewable energy, 2012). This is natural energy produced by different elements on the earth, with the exception of fossil fuels.
Environmental Schools of Thought
Write 350- to 700-words below in which you select two of the following environmental schools of thought found among the terms in the worksheet. The environmental schools of thought are: o Anthropocentric o Biocentric o Deep ecology/ecocentric
Explain how your chosen two schools of thought view a local environmental issue differently. Be sure to address any ethical concerns or controversies surrounding this environmental issue.
Your Response: The two environmental schools of thought that I have chosen are anthropocentric and biocentric. A local environmental issue that affects my area on a regular basis is flooding. Many of the houses in my area are built on the banks of the Susquehanna River. When hurricane season arrives each year, the community is on alert for possible floods. In addition, the drainage in the city is of poor quality, or placed in the incorrect spots. Using the anthropocentric school of thought, many humans are affected by the flooding. There have been issues of individuals drowning because of flash flooding. The local government should take the time to update the drainage system. This would allow water to flow more quickly down stream or in holding tanks to be used elsewhere. Unfortunately, to prevent the houses along the river from flooding, they would either need to be demolished or a levee be installed. Neither of these options is available due to historical reasons. Ethically, the government should take responsibility and fix the drainage issues, and offer solutions for the residences along the river. For example, advise the residences to keep their basements empty for when the water rises, this way no one is hurt when having to move items to higher ground. In addition, the local government officials should hold seminars advising how to safety secure the houses for structural integrity. For instance, residences in row homes should be advised not to pump to prevent adjoining basement walls from clasping, or to install jack stands under the house to help with the settling after the waters recede. Looking at flooding through the biocentric school of thought would look at the affects that flooding has on the other species living in the area. When the river flooding fish, insects, and other organisms are forced to move as well. However, this is not the only issue that affects these species. Residences have a tendency to leave some items behind during an evacuation. For instance, gas cans, paint cans, and other contaminates. These contaminates are pulled back into the river when the water recedes and can pollute many ecosystems in the process. The affects may not be right away, but over time when the chemicals are left untreated, they can affect all species. To help prevent this, government officials should spray nontoxic suppressants that would absorb the chemicals and naturally dissolve.

References
Dolêga, J. M. (n.d.). Sozology and Ecophilosophy: Sciences of the 20th Century. Retrieved from http://www.bu.edu/wcp/Papers/Envi/EnviDole.htm
Dualism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/dualism
Ecocentrism. (n.d.). In Encyclo. Retrieved from http://www.encyclo.co.uk/define/ecocentrism
Ethical extensionism. (n.d.). In Encyclo. Retrieved from http://www.encyclo.co.uk/define/Ethical%20extensionism
Hedonism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/hedonism
Holism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/holism?s=t
Individualism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/individualism?s=t
Materialism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/materialism?s=t
Metaphysical. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/metaphysical?s=t
Minialism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/minimalism?s=t
Monism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/monism?s=t
Naturalism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/naturalism?s=t
Normative. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/normative?s=t
Pluralism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/pluralism?s=ts
Pragmatic. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/pragmatic?s=t
Raven, P., Berg, L., & Hassenzahl, D. (2010). Environment. (7th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons, Inc.
Relativism. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/relativism?s=t
Renewable energy. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/renewable+energy?s=t
Utilitarian. (2012). In Dictionary.com. Retrieved from http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Utilitarian?s=t

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