Making Ecological Values Make Sense: Toward More Operationalizable Ecological Legislation

Ethics and the Environment 21 (2):1-25 (2016)
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Abstract
Value claims about ecological entities, their functionality, and properties take center stage in so-called “ecological” ethical and aesthetic theories. For example, the claim that the biodiversity in an old-growth forest imbues it with “value in and for itself” is an explicit value claim about an ecological property. And the claim that one can study “the aesthetics of nature, including natural objects...such as ecosystems” presupposes that natural instances of a type of ecological entity exist and can be regarded as more or less aesthetically valuable. My discussion below will bear wide implications for how claims like...
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