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Environmental Values

Does 'Restoration' Necessarily Imply the Domination of Nature?

Donna Ladkin

Environmental Values 14(2005): 203-219. doi: 10.3197/0963271054084911

'Restoration' is a contested term holding important implications for public policy decisions in the areas of land development and use. A number of environmental philosophers including Eric Katz and Robert Elliott have argued against 'restoration', on the principle that human efforts can never restore natural landscapes to their pre-disrupted value, and that the assumption of our ability to do so implies 'domination'. This paper argues that restoration attempts should not be dismissed 'out of hand', and can be conducted outside of a 'dominator logic' provided four criteria are enacted: 1) humans see their role as co-creators working alongside nature, 2) the aim of restoration is seen to be increase of land health and bio-diversity 3) there is a commitment to learning from the land and 4) the land's own 'projects' (Plumwood) are taken into account.


KEYWORDS: Restoration, environmental ethics, land development, re-inhabitation, land health

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Dominating Nature. Jason Brennan


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