This course asks the ultimate environmental question, can the world’s human population adopt policies and economic practices that will enable it to live within the carrying capacity of nature and avoid ecological calamity. Our search for answers to this overarching question leads us to explore the fields of environmental economics, environmental policy, and ecological. The challenging interdisciplinary course reveals how political and economic forces operate within the bounds of nature, and the ecological consequences when human pressures overwhelm natural systems. The course stresses the serious environmental challenges that the world faces, as well as potential solutions to these important problems. Introductory material in each of the disciplines will provide the fundamental knowledge base essential for the subsequent examination of specific environmental cases. A multidisciplinary presentation of broad environmental issues such as climate change, pollution, population growth, resource depletion, and conservation will be followed by specific local, regional, and global case studies relevant to our itinerary. Our ultimate goal is to demonstrate how effective policies and economic practices can effect positive environmental change on our rode to sustainability.
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