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Unformatted text preview: ENVR 201 – 001 SOCIETY, ENVIRONMENT AND SUSTAINABILITY Tue/Thu 10:05-11:25 Instructor: LEA 26 Prof. Madhav G. Badami Fall 2010 (Urban Planning/MSE) COURSE OUTLINE Calendar Description : This course deals with how scientific-technological, socio- economic, political-institutional and behavioural factors mediate society-environment interactions. Issues discussed include population and resources; consumption, impacts and institutions; integrating environmental values in societal decision-making; and the challenges associated with, and strategies for, promoting sustainability. Case studies in various sectors and contexts are used. The course will discuss society-environment interactions in various sectors, including air, water, land, food and agriculture, fisheries, transport, and energy, and how issues of politics, equity, and how we value the natural environment are inextricably intertwined in the debates around environmental problems. An important function of the lectures is to critically discuss important but often contested concepts such as “sustainability”, “resources”, and “development”. The course deals with questions on which people tend to have strong opinions: What are the causes of human overuse or misuse of our environment? Are there too many people and not enough resources? What matters more: population or consumption? Can technological fixes solve environmental problems? Can “getting the prices right” solve these problems? Are there limits to economic growth and/or human development? What is the role of political action in efforts to save the environment? Can we (and how do we) live sustainably and equitably in a global community? Wherever possible, case studies will be used to ground our discussions, and to help students gain a deeper appreciation of theoretical concepts. We will discuss environmental issues not only in various sectors, but also in different geographical contexts. This approach will allow us to make connections and investigate similarities and differences between environmental issues in different sectors and contexts, and explore the implications of these similarities and differences for addressing these issues in different sectors and contexts. Students will be expected to read extensively and carefully analyze the material in the lectures and readings. They will also need to understand interconnections among case studies and analytic issues presented in the lectures and readings. The lectures will complement the readings, raising additional questions and adding information about their significance for understanding society-environment interactions. Also, be warned that the readings and lectures will not always ENVR 201 Society, Environment and Sustainability Fall 2010 2 agree. This reflects the character of the subject, which brings together ideas from many disciplines and stimulates sharp debates concerning environmental issues....
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- Fall '10
- Natural environment