What is Earth Ethics?
Earth Ethics is the discernment of how to live in relationship with the living planet. The field of ethics deals with the distinction between right and wrong, and the implications for how to live, as individuals and collectives. Earth Ethics reminds us that we are connected to the Earth and that our moral obligations extend across space, time and even species.
Earth Ethics (1) acknowledges that those who are least responsible for pollution and depletion of the natural world are the most harmed by them, (2) extends moral concern to future generations, (3) extends moral concern to nonhuman life, and (4) recognizes the planet as a living whole.
Earth Ethics is an essential field of thought today because many of the activities that are harming ecosystems not only are legal, but often encouraged. This field is dynamic and diffuse, but humanity must engage with it seriously and more widely to correct course in our relationship to the ecological web of life upon which we all depend for survival.