Resources under Regimes: Technology, Environment, and the by Paul R. Josephson

By Paul R. Josephson

Democratic or authoritarian, each society wishes fresh air and water; each country needs to deal with its natural world and common assets. during this provocative, comparative learn, Paul R. Josephson asks to what quantity the shape of a central authority and its economy--centrally deliberate or marketplace, colonial or post-colonial--determines how politicians, bureaucrats, scientists, engineers, and industrialists handle environmental and social difficulties provided by way of the transformation of nature right into a humanized panorama. the reports of the industrialized and industrializing global, assets lower than Regimes explores the connection among technological know-how, know-how, and the surroundings. Josephson considers international responses to deforestation, water pollutants, and international warming, displaying how assorted societies convey diverse values and assumptions to undergo at the similar challenge, and arrive at diversified conclusions concerning the excellent consequence and the way in which of attaining it. He unearths the real ways that smooth governments facilitate energy new release, transportation, water creation, and different applied sciences that enhance the standard of existence; and the both severe ways that they reply to the ensuing depredations--the toxins, waste, and depletion that represent the worldwide environmental drawback before everything of the twenty-first century. (20050701)

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Extra info for Resources under Regimes: Technology, Environment, and the State (New Histories of Science, Technology, and Medicine)

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The simple belief had grown out of the Enlightenment worldview that nature itself could be made industrial and that the transformation of biological organisms into highly productive monocultures was a reasonable path to follow. Yet no science of fish ecology existed to consider the environmental issues attendant on the industrial fisheries. Few limnologists (freshwater scientists) or ichthyologists (fish specialists) were employed in state conservation departments. Also, fish farming was not profitable in North America until the early twentieth century, since commercial fishing on wild, unmanaged bodies of fresh water provided an adequate supply of fish to meet domestic demand.

The Malayan Nature Society successfully defended the Taman Negara Park after a series of contentious public meetings. The government may have abandoned the project in 1983, as in other cases, not only because of public opposition, but because of growing cost estimates and declining projections of true productive capacity ($300 million for only 110 MW to provide less than 3 percent of the country’s electrical power capacity). In Australia, after officials announced their intention to build a dam on the Gordon River below the junction with Franklin River in the heart of the southwest, public opposition eventually led to the abandonment of the project, but only after an Australian Supreme Court decision in 1985.

To date, agriculture has garnered the lion’s share of the water. But with the growth of cities in the West and Southwest, the system by which water is allocated has come under great stress. Scholars, journalists, and eyewitnesses have written dozens of books on the history of the creation of hydroelectric power stations along the Columbia River, the most famous being the Grand Coulee Dam, the irrigation systems that the Bureau of Reclamation added to take advantage of vast amounts of water stored in great reservoirs, and the establishment of the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to administer the copious amounts of electricity now produced.

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