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What do we mean by the term "environment?"  Explain briefly.Short description on...

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gulatimonisha28 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted July 19, 2009 at 9:40 PM via web

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What do we mean by the term "environment?"  Explain briefly.

Short description on environment

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted July 19, 2009 at 10:01 PM (Answer #1)

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The term "environment" refers to the natural setting in which we live.  For example, a "home environment" refers to where we live, our homes.  A "work environment" our workplace.  I would sense that your use of it might be referring to our shared ecology on the planet.  Currently, the term, "environment" refers to an ecological awareness that concerns itself with rectifying and sustaining the planet during its current challenges. Some of these involve global warming, punctures in the ozone layer, and/ or burning of fossil fuels, just to name a few.  The "environment" is the catch all term that applies to a heightened sense of ecological awareness.

The "environment" movement consists of individuals who are committed to this end.  This can take the form of two types of environmental ethical approaches:  "Shallow environmental ethic" and "deep environmental ethic."  Shallow ethic involves small scale initiatives that can be done locally and quite naturally to assist in the enhancement of the environment, and to prevent further degradation on a micro level:  Recycling products that can be reused, switching off lights when leaving a room, inflating car tires to decrease gas fill ups over time, using rain barrels to water lawns, chaging to environmental friendly light bulbs, etc.  These are small scale environmental approaches, hence "shallow ethic."  "Deep environmetal ethic" is larger in scope and attempts to achieve ecological change on structural levels.  For example, targetting companies with fines and punishment who degrade the environment, such as dumping toxic chemicals in water or polluting air, or demanding that auto makers create one energy efficient car for one "traditional" car.  "Deep ethic" believers argue that the best way to help to environment is create the foundation for long lasting change and feels that "shallow ethic" is good, but can only go so far.  Until there is a structural change in how companies and governments operate, the environment is in dire straits.

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krishna-agrawala | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted July 21, 2009 at 2:17 PM (Answer #2)

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Stated very briefly, environment means surrounding conditions. In practice the term environment is used to denote all the factors and influences that have impact on a particular object of study or consideration. Thus when we are talking about the suitability of a place for growing of a particular fruit in a particular area, the factors we need to focus on will include surrounding conditions such as type of soil and climate. However when we are trying to formulate the strategy of a business enterprise we will need to consider factors such as competition, suppliers, demography, legal, and so on. Thus depending on the context in which we use the word, environment may refer to different type of environment such as physical environment, business environment, cultural environment, ambiance of a restaurant, the general condition of morale in an organization, and so on.

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