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This book explores the philosophical background of questions on environmental justice. It focuses on theories of distributive justice, primarily those which concern the manner in which benefits and burdens should be allocated when there is a scarcity of benefits (relative to people's wants or needs) and a surfeit of burdens. It is one of those rare philosophy books that is at once accessible and sophisticated, as it introduces both philosophers and people interested in environmental studies, law, and economics to germane developments in the philosophical treatment of the question of justice. Since environmental concerns are uniquely global, theories of distributive justice are tested most thoroughly for their comprehensiveness when they are applied to environmental matters. Consequently, most illustrations and applications in this book are drawn from contexts of environmental concerns including property rights, human rights, animal rights, general utility, and hypothetical contracts.
Peter S. Wenz is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Legal Studies at Sangamon State University, Springfield, Illinois.
"This book is engaging, uses effective examples, and is informative to the lay reader. The breadth of the inquiry is quite astonishing, and the material is accessible. "— James E. Krier, University of Michigan Law School