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dc.contributor.authorEggleston, John E.
dc.date.accessioned2010-12-02T20:18:22Z
dc.date.issued2002
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/10182/2926
dc.description.abstractThis thesis is focused on the ethical acceptability of two conflicting policy preferences regarding the management of wild ungulates in the New Zealand conservation estate. These are (1) a 'preservationist' position regarding wild ungulates primarily as 'pests' to be eradicated, or at least controlled as effectively as technically and economically possible; and (2) a 'resource' position regarding wild ungulates as valuable wild animals to be managed primarily as a 'game resource'. I argue that for policy disputes such as this defined by strongly conflicting underlying value assumptions, ethical analysis may be essential to the development of any lasting policy consensus. The conventional understanding of applied ethics regards any such ethical analysis as involving the 'deductive' application of a single general ethical theory to the circumstances of the particular 'moral problem' (i.e. the conflicting value assumptions regarding the policy dispute). Reasons are given for the rejection of this approach. Instead, alternative applied ethics methods developing within modern clinical bioethics practice that adopt a pluralist understanding of ethical theory and place greater emphasis on contextual factors are advocated. Following the application of this methodology, I argue that the emphasis of New Zealand conservation policy on the protection of native biodiversity expressed through attempted re-creation of historical biotic assemblages is theoretically problematic and even self-defeating. A case is made for a primary focus on protection of the wild and self-renewing capacities of nature. It is argued that this revised conception of the conservation project allows in principle for the acceptance of introduced wild animals as naturalised members of the biota. Ecocentric ethical frameworks are argued to offer the best prospects for the ethical justification of the 'pest' policy option. Major theoretical difficulties with ecocentrism are identified, ruling out this basis for ethical justification. A more qualified basis for ethical duties to nature (and hence more closely qualified ecological interventions) sourced in a moral duty to make restitution for anthropogenic harms to wild nature is then advocated. A 'weak anthropocentric' ethical framework is argued to best support the 'resources' policy option. No coherent, ethically acceptable justification for recreational hunting is identified beyond possibly an ecologically therapeutic function. Such an indirect justification for recreational hunting is undermined by the possibility that better managed commercial hunting could perform this same function more effectively. The conclusions reached from the ethical analysis inform strong criticism of current Department of Conservation (DOC) deer control policy (DOC, 2001). An alternative 'wild animal and human interaction policy' consistent with my ethical conclusions is proposed. This includes parameters that could assist DOC determine what constitutes ethically justifiable interventions for particular conservation estate sites. It is suggested that this case study supports a general conclusion that ethical concerns should properly be brought more to the fore in conservation policy making.en
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherLincoln University
dc.subjectenvironmental ethicsen
dc.subjectapplied ethicsen
dc.subjectenvironmental historyen
dc.subjectintroduced wild ungulatesen
dc.subjectecological theoryen
dc.subjectconservation policyen
dc.subjectwildlife managementen
dc.subjecthuman dimensionsen
dc.titleConflicting values regarding the management of deer and other wild ungulates in New Zealand: a case study in environmental ethicsen
dc.typeThesis
thesis.degree.grantorLincoln Universityen
thesis.degree.levelMastersen
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Resource Studiesen
lu.contributor.unitLincoln University
lu.contributor.unitFaculty of Environment, Society and Design
dc.rights.accessRightsDigital thesis can be viewed by current staff and students of Lincoln University only. If you are the author of this item, please contact us if you wish to discuss making the full text publicly available.en
pubs.organisational-group/LU
pubs.organisational-group/LU/Faculty of Environment, Society and Design
pubs.publication-statusPublisheden
dc.publisher.placeCanterburyen


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