Fulfilling the Promise of the Earth Charter
Edited by Peter Burdon, Klaus Bosselmann and Kirsten Engel
Chapter 11: J. Ronald Engels vision for achieving a sustainable world
This chapter argues that a first order task that needs to be addressed before ethical principles such as those in the Earth Charter can play their needed role in shaping public policy is to open public policy making to express ethical reflection. This is a first order task because all throughout the world, those responsible for environmental and sustainable development policy making are following instrumental reason - a mode of reason which hides or ignores ethical questions - to formulate public policy on environmental and natural resource issues. Thus, this chapter argues that to implement Engel’s moral vision to achieve a just and sustainable global order, citizens and policymakers must demand that all arguments made in opposition to policies designed to achieve a just and sustainable be expressly examined through an ethical lens.
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