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Corrosive Effects: Environmental Ethics and the Metaphysics of Acid Mine Drainage

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image of Research in Phenomenology

Environmentally we seem to be both the victims and the perpetrators of a type of bait and switch: lured into the discussion by one set of intuitions, our interests become redescribed in terms that are intellectually more respectable. Our deepest concerns with the environment are converted into foreign discourses, as we strain to make the languages of science, economics, and interest group politics express our intuitions. The circumscription of environmental philosophy within environmental ethics is one manifestation of this process of bait and switch. 'Corrosive Effects' critiques this process through a case study of acid mine drainage-water pollution resulting from mining activities. An analysis of acid mine drainage reveals the metaphysical and theological roots of many of our environmental problems.


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